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fhe Great vOe^oman 




PENTIMENTO 



SPRING/SUMMER 1988 




J Vol. 9, No. 1 Spring/Summer 1988 

/The 
*VCrealtoe 

^wm.'lll Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466-3193 



PUBLISHED UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE PROVOST'S OFFICE, ©1988 GOVERNORS STATE UNIVERSITY AND HELEN HUGHES 
ISSN 0736-4731 



STAFF 

Helen E. Hughes, Editor 

Suzanne Oliver, Art Director 

Alcia Ryan, Designer 

Margo Witkowsky, Typesetter & Designer 

Virginia Eysenbach, Editorial Consultant 

Claudia Snow, Editorial Assistant 



ADVISORY COUNCIL 

Glenda Bailey-Mershon, Illinois NOW/National Organization for Women, Oak Park, IL 

Donna Bandstra, Healthgroup International, Sherman Oaks, CA 

Margaret Brady, Social Sciences, Homewood, IL 

Rev. Ellen Dohner Livingston, Religion, Unitarian Society of Pomona Valley, CA 

Rita Durrant, League of American Pemvomen, Doylestown, PA 

Deborah Garretson Counseling, Park Forest, IL 

Temmie Gilbert, Theatre /Media, Governors State University 

Linda Grace-Kobas, Journalism, University of Buffalo, N.Y. 

Harriet Gross, Sociology /Woman's Studies, Governors State University 

Helene N. Guttman, Biological Sciences, Bethesda, MD 

Bethe Hagens, Anthropology, Governors State University 

Barbara Jenkins, Psychology, Governors State University 

Young Kim, Communications Science, Governors State University 

Joan Lewis, Poetry, Powell, OH 

Betye Saar, Fine Arts, Hollywood, CA 

Terri Schwartz, Psychology, Governors State University 

Sara Shumer, Political Theory, Haverford College, PA 

Lynn Thomas Strauss, Women's Studies: Parenting, Oak Park, IL 

Emily Wasiolek, Literature, Prairie State College, Chicago Heights, IL 



PAGE 



TABLE OF CONTENTS 



3 Introduction 

4 What's In A Name Revisited, Barbara Strudler Wallston 

9 Comments To Barbara Wallston by David Matteson, Paul Green and Harriet Gross 

13 Poetry 

18 Through The Fence-Trespass For Peace, Ellen Woodward Moaney 

20 Summer Time, Maria del Carmen Artigas 

23 On Adrienne Rich, Jon Lee Hall 

27 The Secret Spell, Delores DuBois 

30 Maria Sibylla Merian, 17th Century Jungle Scientist, Margarita Mondrus Engle 

33 My Love Affair With A Morningcloak Butterfly, Marguerite Knickerbocker 

34 Book Review: The Chalice and The Blade, Reviewed by Michael Purdy 
36 Book Review: Aquarian Conspiracy, Reviewed by Bethe Hagens 

41 Letter To The Editor 

43 Announcements 

45 Editor's Column 



The Creative Woman is published three times a year by Governors 
State University. We focus on a special topic in each issue, presented 
from a feminist perspective. We celebrate the creative achievements of 
women in many fields and appeal to inquiring minds. We publish fic- 
tion, poetry, book reviews, articles, photography and original graphics. 



Cover artwork by Maria Sibylla Merian, 
see article page 30. 





INTRODUCTION 






PENTIMENTO 



*£*&> 




The current wave of the women's movement is 
twenty years old. It is time to pause, look back, 
reflect, and assess our progress. In Lillian 
Hellman's autobiography, Pentimento, she de- 
scribes how we now want to "see and then see 
again." She writes, "Old paint on canvas, as it 
ages, sometimes becomes transparent. When that 
happens it is possible, in some pictures, to see the 
original lines: a tree will show through a women's 
dress, a child makes way for a dog, a large boat is 
no longer on an open sea. That is called 'pen- 
timento' because the painter repented, changed her 
mind. Perhaps it would be as well to say that the 
old conception, replaced by a later choice, is a way 
of seeing and then seeing again. . ." 

In this issue, we look again, we take a second look. 
The late Barbara Wallston presents her scholarly 
analysis of the issue of naming, followed by three 
divergent discussants. Bethe Hagens has com- 
pared the first and second editions of Marilyn 
Ferguson's Aquarian Conspiracy, relating it to 
current "new age" ideas. Margarita Mondrus 
Engle has rediscovered for us the remarkable and 
brilliant seventeenth century artist and scientist 
Maria Sibylla Merian. Jon Lee Hall gives us a long- 
view summary of the poetry of Adrienne Rich 
spanning three decades. And short stories by 
Delores DuBois and Maria C. Artigas examine the 
changes in romantic desire that alter the landscape 
between youth and middle age. We visit Betye 
Saar's latest show, Resurrection : Site Installations 
in Fullerton, California. 

We also bring you a Spring bouquet of poets, a 
stirring account of civil disobedience at the Nevada 
Test Site by Ellen Woodward Moaney, and a book 
review of Riane Eisler's The Chalice and the 
Blade by Michael Purdy. 






CRITICAL THOUGHT 





WHAT'S IN A NAME REVISITED: 
Psychology of Women versus 
Feminist Psychology 



frequently been argued in discussions of methodology 
(e.g., Wallston & Grady, 1985) our labels for variables 
affect the nature of our questions and research direc- 
tions. So, too, does our label for our field influence the 
nature and direction of the field. 



Barbara Strudler Wallston 

George Peabody College of Vanderbilt University 

March 1986 Invited Address 
Association for Women in Psychology 
Oakland, California 




Barbara Strudler Wallston 



When our field got its recent formal beginning with the 
formation of AWP in 1969 and the later formation of 
Division 35 in 1973, there was much discussion of our 
naming and the implications of that name. 

AWP's name is often misrepresented. Although we 
began as the Association of Women in Psychology, we 
quickly changed our name to the Association for 
Women in Psychology to represent both the inclusion of 
men and the inclusion of goals related to the clients of 
psychology, not just of psychologists. We recognized 
then that our language was important and our name in 
particular was symbolic of our beliefs and ideals. As has 



Today, I will therefore present what I expect to be a 
controversial suggestion about changing our name. I 
hope this idea will focus us on further self-definition and 
help us clarify who we are and what we do. 

I will argue that we should formally endorse the label 
"Feminist Psychology." I will present some history of 
the name question and suggestion why changing times 
make a renaming appropriate. I will then present some 
visions of feminist psychology as well as some discus- 
sion of the practicality of my suggestion. While I don't 
expect everyone to agree with me, I hope today I will 
push you to think further about the issues in the field. 

Preparing this talk has been tremendous fun because it 
gave me an excuse to read somewhat widely in feminist 
theory, particularly some interesting writing by philoso- 
phers (e.g., Gould, 1983). I think the lack of cross- 
fertilization between mainstream psychology of women 
and these feminist theorists is detrimental to both 
groups. These theorists are interested in psychology of 
women, but their picture of the field is quite limited. 
They cite Chodorow, Gilligan, Miller, and Dinnerstein 
but no other contemporary feminist psychologists. Why 
such theorists do not also read Parlee, Henley, Grady, 
Fine, Frieze, CLeary, etc., is obviously beyond the scope 
of my talk today, but I think we do need to engage 
feminist theorists more broadly than we have. Our 
science will certainly profit from their ideas, and their 
work will profit from ours as well. 

What's in a Name? 

The heart of the early name debates can be found in the 
Mednick (1976) and Parlee (1975) pieces in Signs and a 
piece by Judy Alpert and Mary Sue Richardson in the 
SASP newsletter (1978). Since it's been a while, let me 
briefly recap the discussion. 

Parlee' s argument in 1975 is parallel to one of my 
arguments today. She suggests that the label psychol- 
ogy of women is "a conceptual monstrosity. . . [and] it 
implies the need for a special set of laws and theories to 
account for the behavior and experience of females." (p. 
120) She suggests that psychology and women as used 
by Henley would be better. She particularly highlights 
the psychology for women that has been done by 
feminist psychologists whom she defines as "a feminist... 
and a psychologist whose research is in an area where a 
psychologist's perspective on feminism affects the way 
she or he formulates problems and questions." (p. 131) 
The goal of such work is "the development of a body of 



knowledge that is more relevant to a specific under- 
standing of women's behavior and experience." (p. 13) 

Mednick's (1976) reply argued for the label psychology 
of women as an integrative and catalytic rubric. She 
claimed conceptually this area is no more problematic 
than child psychology or psychology of aging. More- 
over, she took a pragmatic approach to the label. The 
field has burgeoned, so the label must work. It has 
heuristic value. She further provided two helpful 
definitions of the field. One is from Nancy Russo 
defining psychology of women as the "study of behavior 
mediated by the variable female sex and that experience 
unique to women be the focus of study." (p. 769) Her 
own definition is the "study of the psychology of vari- 
ations within group and across time, of the female 
experience." (p. 769) She said an important aspect of the 
new field is its recognition of woman as more than the 
reflection of man. Moreover, she noted that as we go 
forth in our scholarship, synthesizing empiricism, and 
developing theory formulating research agendas "argu- 
ing about what our field should be called will be of 
secondary importance." (p. 770) 



from the new right. How can I suggest a renaming that 
may be perceived as more radical? To many, feminism 
is perceived as a dirty word. "I'm not a feminist but. . ." 
is often heard from women who agree with many of our 
ideas but feel a need to dissociate. We all have noticed a 
new conservatism from our students, even in women's 
studies courses (e.g., Walsh, 1985). 

I see my suggestion as in line with Fine's (1985) notion 
that we must guard ourselves from the temptation to 
shave the radical edge from "our thinking" (p. 181) 
during this period when we are under attack. But more 
importantly, the basis of my position is that consciously 
adopting feminist psychology as our label is critical for 
progress in our scholarship. 

Men 

I come to this idea in part from my activities in the 
feminist's men's movement (Gross, Smith & Wallston. 
1983). I am founding and active member of the National 
Organization for Changing Men. That group with many 
parallels to AWP works primarily through task groups. 
The largest task group focuses on men's studies. 



Alpert and Richardson (1978) give the analogy of 
naming a child. The birth name provides the essence 
and the surname the origin. Nicknames allow a variety 
of aspects to emerge. They suggest that our name 
debate reflects the unresolved substance and mul- 
tiple parents of psychology of women. They said 
that the birth name would stick but we should allow 
nicknames that express differences we can tolerate. 

In fact, Alpert and Richardson were accurate, as was 
Mednick. Little has been heard of this debate over the 
last 10 years. I no longer discuss it in graduate seminars. 
Interestingly, in the notes I found for such a seminar in 
which we read the Mednick and Parlee pieces, I wrote 
that I agreed with Mednick. Possibly that was due to 
my pragmatic bent. Nonetheless, I believe that periodic 
review of the field is important and thus, I raise the 
question again with a new suggested label. 

Historical Context 

Contemporaneous with the growth of psychology of 
women, the field of women's studies came into being. I 
don't recall much similar dispute about the name and 
what it implied at the founding conference of the 
National Women's Studies Association in 1978. 
Women's Studies programs had developed and the 
name was a natural extension. Many professional 
organizations had women's caucuses and sections 
focusing on women. 

These were the conditions of the late 1960s and early 
1970s with the beginnings of the Women's Liberation 
Movement and the parallel inroads and transformations 
of scholarship. Clearly, 1986 is a very different time. 
The times are more conservative. We are under attack 



While a first response to the idea of men's studies might 
be "but, all scholarship has been men's studies," Harry 
Brod (in press) presents an excellent case for the new 
men's studies as essential to women's studies. He 
defines the goal of men's studies as "the study of 
masculinities and male experiences as specific and 
varying social/cultural/historical formations, on no 
more elevated a level than femininities rather than as a 
universal norm." (p. 6) Note how that parallels 
Mednick's definition of psychology of women. He 
points out that traditional scholarship which overgener- 
alizes from male to generic human precludes the study 
of specific male experience. He provides several ex- 
amples of the new men's scholarship including 1) 
perspectives on men's violence asking "how can we 
strengthen the mechanisms of resistance by which non- 
violent men have avoided acting on society's prescrip- 
tions for male violence?" (p. 18) and 2) a history that 
recaptures the ambiguities of masculinity and recognizes 
the history of anti-sexist men. I'm sure most of us are 
aware of psychological contributions to the new men's 
scholarship including work by Pleck (1981) and Brannon 
(Pleck & Brannon, 1978). 

While Brod argues for an autonomous men's studies as 
"a complement, not a co-optation, of women's studies." 
(p. 32) I would argue that the new men's scholarship is 
an appropriate part of feminist scholarship and can best 
be done under that label with a combined approach. He 
argues against integration under gender studies, because 
though a more inclusive label, such integration betokens 
a spurious parity between women's and men's studies." 
(p. 31) I agree with that critique of the gender label, but 
I believe feminist studies handles the issue, as I will 
explain later. 



Brod argues that we need "systematically focused study 
of masculinity which only men's studies can provide, (p. 
32), although he recognizes the possibility of work in 
men's and women's studies being described as gender 
scholarship. 

His discussion of the possibility of non-feminist or anti- 
feminist men's studies adds to my case for feminist 
studies. Brod argues for repudiation of such perspec- 
tives in men's studies on political and scholarly grounds 
"Anti- or non-feminist perspectives are inadequate as 
frameworks for the development of the field" (p. 29) and 
the impact of such work should be minimized by "the 
superior quality of feminist scholarship." (p. 28) How- 
ever, I am not as sanguine about this approach in 
contrast to excluding such work from the field, because 
quality is in the eyes of the beholder and anti-feminist 
perspectives are likely to be championed by those in 
power. Why give them legitimacy within a men's 
studies perspective? I understand Brod's discomfort 
with "exclude[ing] such work from men's studies by 
stipulative fiat" (p. 28), but the labels Feminist Studies, 
Feminist Scholarship, and Feminist Psychology will 
allow non-feminists to exclude themselves. There will 
be less confusion, I believe, from such an approach. 

Thus, part of my argument for feminist psychology is 
that there is a growing psychology of men and masculin- 
ity that should be included as part of our field. We need 
the interactions of these perspectives with psychology of 
women perspectives for the good of the field. Both male 
sex and female sex as variables mediate behavior, and I 
believe coordinated study is our most fruitful approach. 
Such interaction will be best fostered under the label 
feminist psychology. 

Gender 

The second major part of my argument rests on concep- 
tions of gender, sex differences, and society. While 
many feminists will clearly disagree with the concep- 
tions I present, I believe that feminist psychology can 
accommodate the varying perspectives while this is 
more difficult with separately developing psychologies 
of women and men. 

I personally take what has sometimes been called the 
minimalist as opposed to a maximalist position on sex 
differences (Stimson, 1985). That means for me that 
there are few inherent differences between women and 
men. The differences we see are often caused by power 
differentials, differential socialization, and a variety of 
situational factors. For an excellent theoretical account 
of sex differences that could nonetheless fit a minimalist 
position, see Eagley's (in press) forthcoming book 
interpreting sex differences in social behavior in terms of 
the differential distribution of men and women in social 
roles. 



An opposite or maximalist position on sex differences 
that is clearly feminist is most frequently expressed by 
Gilligan (1982) who ignores the basis of differences but 
asserts women's different moral voice. 

An interesting and helpful perspective on varieties of 
feminists' views of sex differences, the way such views 
underlie dilemmas in the field over integration versus 
separation of psychology of women, and their relation to 
visions of the field's future has been presented by Kahn 
and Jean (1983). I am in their middle position of "inte- 
gration follows equality" with a vision of "psychology of 
women as a political tool to expose the power dynamics 
of society." (p. 666) Very parallel ideas are developed by 
Lott (1985) in her excellent piece in the American 
Psycholog ist, and Fine (1985) in her recent Psychology 
of Women Quarterly article in which she expresses 
concern over essentialist positions on gender. 

The maximalist position is consonant with a separate 
psychology of women creating an independent body of 
knowledge. Graham and Rawlings' (1980) discussion of 
feminist methodology provides one example. 

These issues of how gender is understood are also 
central in the philosophical literature I read (e.g., Gould, 
1983). The range of positions is similar with some 
arguing for women as holistic, contextual, nurturant 
(Donovan, 1985; Harding, 1983), while others discuss the 
distinction, recognize the feminist maximalist position 
that is sometimes labeled radical feminist and develop 
interesting discussions of the interplay of biology, 
history, environment, and forms of social organization 
as affecting sex differences (Gould, 1983; Jagger, 1983; 
Nicholson, 1983, Perreault, 1983; Richards, 1980; Whit- 
beck, 1983). I'll discuss some of these ideas a bit more 
specifically as a basis for a feminist psychology. 

Given then my minimalist perspective, I have argued 
elsewhere for a psychology that is gendered rather than 
female centered (Wallston, in press), to use Stacey and 
Thome's (1984) terminology. The label, psychology of 
women, seems to me to assume differences as does the 
parallel, psychology of men. In the same way (1) that I 
and others have argued that a problem with androgyny 
was the use of the labels masculine and feminine rather 
than instrumental and expressive/nurturant or agentic 
and communal for the dimensions (Eagley, in press; 
Spence & Helmreich, 1978; Wallston, 1981) and (2) that I 
further argued that labeling methodology as masculine 
or feminine was problematic (Wallston & Grady, 1985), I 
am now asserting that separate psychologies of men and 
women are similarly problematic. Such separations 
make it more difficult to see gender as socially con- 
structed gender, that is overly central (in my view) as 
core to understanding human psychology. They make it 
less likely that we will search for the commonalities in 
psychological processes that may exist. They also make 
the exploration of the varieties of ways of being male 



and female and especially the parallels within such 
variety, less likely. All of these, I believe, would be 
better accomplished by a consciously feminist psychol- 
ogy. Such an approach would nonetheless allow a focus 
on women's reality and an exploration of male/female 
differences, two of the valuable undertakings made 
possible by beginning with psychology of women as our 
field of study. 

What is Feminist Psychology 

While I may not have you all convinced that our field's 
development is best undertaken as feminist psychology, 
I would turn now to some discussion of the shape of that 
field. Maybe my vision will help to sell you. 

Good definitions of feminism are not easy to find. Many 
of us use the term without ever defining it. Several that I 
found do approach what I mean by feminism, and it is 
not captured in the typical dictionary definition. Per- 
reault (1983) says that what feminist views have in 
common is that they are "concerned about the subordi- 
nate position of women in. . . society." (p. 284) Similarly 
Richards (1980) argues that "women suffer from system- 
atic social injustice because of their sex. . . is the essence 
of feminist." (p. 1) She argues, I believe persuasively, 
that many other aspects often associated with feminism 
should not constitute part of the definition. It is on such 
grounds that I rejected Ferree and Hess' (1985) broader 
definition. My favorite definition comes from Iris Young 
(in Jagger, 1983) "Feminism in fact is the conviction that 
women in our society constitute an oppressed group and 
that this oppression ought to be ended." (p. 27) 

The essential elements then for me of feminist, denota- 
tively, that would be applied to psychology are: (1) 
women's oppression, (2) the need for change, and (3) 
women constitute a group. However, nothing in the 
definitions includes assumptions about differences or 
the varieties of female experience. I believe this defini- 
tion fits with Fine's (1985) characterization of a feminist 
psychology as one in which "gender and the social 
construction of gender inequities frame theory, research, 
and analysis." (p. 168) Although an emphasis on gender 
is not an element of the definition, such an emphasis 
grows out of a psychological construction of inequity 
and for my purposes, I consider it a fourth essential 
element of a feminist psychology. I will briefly address 
each of these elements and then discuss some connota- 
tions of feminist that do not stem from the definition but 
that are part of my vision of feminist psychology. 

Women's oppression . I selected women's oppression as 
the first element because I believe as psychologists it 
leads us to the study of power. I argue extensively 
elsewhere for the centrality of such work and provide 
examples of the limited extant research and theory 
(Wallston, in press). Thus I will not discuss power 
issues in detail here. For interesting theoretical treat- 
ments of power by philosophers that have potential 
utility for psychologists, I suggest Kitta/s (1983) essay 



on pornography as exemplifying the eroticization of 
domination and power and Aboulafia's (1983) piece 
using Hegel's dialectic of master and slave as a basis for 
analyzing male/female relationships. Note that since 
the issue of female oppression is part of the definition, 
the parity of male/female issues potential under a 
gender label is not a problem when using the label 
feminist. 

Need for chang e. The need for change that is part of the 
feminist definition suggests that our psychology will not 
be basic in the traditional sense, as issues of application 
must be considered. This does not imply that we should 
not ask theory-based questions. I strongly believe in 
Lewin's dictum that "there is nothing so practical as a 
good theory." It does mean that we must consider the 
ramifications of our research questions before data 
collection. In fact, such consideration leads to some of 
my concern with the maximalist feminist position on sex 
differences. Perreault (1983) noted the two-edged sword 
this can become. "Although radical feminists use such 
an argument [women's innate superiority] to improve 
women's lives, others mav use the areument to suooort 
policies that maintain women in a subordinate position." 
(p. 299) 

Most important, this element gives us a basis for setting 
priorities in our research agenda. What research is most 
likely to lead to improvement in women's status? An 
example of a feminist basis for a research agenda is pro- 
vided by Bern. She stated in a DPA lecture in Pittsburgh 
(1978) that she moved from a focus on androgyny to a 
focus on gender schema when she realized that a society 
of androgynous individuals could still be sexist. She 
recognized that gender salience was a problem and went 
about beginning to explore that. 

Help in thinking about what is necessary for change can 
be gained from feminists in other disciplines. For 
example, Gould (1983) argued that freedom and self 
development are the preeminent values and discussed 
the social and material conditions necessary for the 
exercise of free choice. There are many ideas for a 
research agenda in her words and she argues, in particu- 
lar, that further analysis of the relations between private 
and public domains is critical. In fact some work in 
feminist psychology has begun to address these issues. 
Gilbert's (1985) redefinition of career to include concern 
with children and family is a prime example. Interest- 
ingly, this is presented in a study of men in dual career 
families. Pleck's (1979) term family work is similarly 
important. 

Women as a group . Logically women as a group is the 
first element of the definition. I have listed it third 
because I see the direct ramifications as least clear. 
Women as a group, within the context of their subordi- 
nation, could provide an argument that feminist psy- 
chology must take women's experience seriously. It 
could also be used to justify a maximalist position. 



Alternatively, one could search for commonalities across 
women but also look for within group differences based 
on this element. Any of these are possible, but I would 
argue that the only essential aspects of a feminist 
psychology is the first, the importance of women's 
experience (Wallston, in press). 

Gender construction . I have already discussed the fact 
that I see knowledge of gender and its social construc- 
tion as central to feminist psychology, even though it 
doesn't flow directly from elements of the definition. 
Useful work that moves in this direction includes 
research on stereotypes (Deaux, 1985; Wallston & 
O'Leary, 1981) and work on attribution (O'Leary & 
Hansen, 1985). 

It is in our conceptions of gender that I think we can 
most profitably interact with feminist theoreticians from 
other disciplines. Of the pieces I read, the one that 
excited me the most presented a feminist ontology based 
on relation rather than opposition (Whitbeck, 1983). 
Although Whitbeck, unfortunately in my view, labels 
the problematic dualities as stemming from a "mascu- 
list" perspective that includes patriarchy and individual- 
ism, her discussion of the limits of dualities is interesting 
and helpful. I'll use the label traditional in place of mas- 
culist. Central, then, to traditional ontology is "the view 
that masculine and feminine are opposite principles that 
symbolize other major oppositions." (p. 67) She notes 
further that the feminist construction, too often, merely 
affirms the goodness of what has been traditionally seen 
as feminine. Arguing that there is a major distinction 
between seeing others as opposite (the traditional view) 
and seeing others as different or distinct, Whitbeck 
provides a discussion very like Eagley's on the basis of 
differences in the view of self and others. She then 
proposes that the core of feminist ontology is self-other 
relations based on beings, who are in some respects 
analogous. Domination, then, is not the major basis for 
relationships. "In place of an ontology characterized by 
dualistic oppositions, of self-other. . . knower-known, 
male-female (and therefore, straight-gay). . . political- 
personal. . . the self-others relation generates a multifac- 
torial interactive model of most, if not all, aspects of 
reality." (p. 76) She then characterizes relationships to 
other people as fundamental to being a person. This 
suggests that a feminist psychology needs to focus on 
relationships, not just on the individual. Clearly, in the 
time I've been given I can't give you the full flavor of 
Whitbeck' s perspective. I hope I have sufficiently 
whetted your appetite to send you to the library. 

Summary . I have thus described the central denotative 
elements of a feminist psychology: (1) the study of 
power, (2) the need for change as a basis for our research 
agenda, (3) valuing women's experience and (4) the 
centrality of the social construction of gender. Other ele- 
ments of my feminist psychology are not as clearly 
derived from a definition of feminism and stem instead 
from the connotations of feminism for me. 



I think an understanding of female oppression means 
we cannot ignore other oppression. Feminist psychol- 
ogy must take race, class, and sexual orientation seri- 
ously as some of the elements affecting the wide variety 
of women's experience. I have discussed this as the 
need for inclusive knowledge (Wallston, in press). 

As many have already addressed, feminist psychology 
also aims for contextual validity. Women and men must 
be understood within the actual conditions of their lives 
(Fine, 1985; Sherif, 1979). This fits with psychological 
directions toward contextualism (McGuire, 1983). 

Finally, the inherent role values play in science is a tenet 
of feminist psychology (e.g., Wallston, 1981). Clearly the 
term feminist has value and political connotations. 
Recognizing the value aspects of science and making 
those values explicit has been an important contribution 
of feminist psychology. 

These, then are elements 5, 6, and 7 of feminist psychol- 
ogy: (5) knowledge needs to be inclusive of the broad 
spectrum of races, classes and sexual orientations; (6) 
behavior must be considered in context; and (7) science 
is always value-based. Now I turn to the practical 
issues. 

Can We Have a Feminist Psychology 

First I want to recognize that many elements of feminist 
psychology are already in place. Three major reviews of 
our field were recently published (Deaux, 1985; Henley, 
1985; Wallston, in press). The titles of these articles 
reflect a move away from a sole focus on women. 
Henley reviewed "Psychology and gender," rather than 
"psychology and women" as Parlee's (1979) earlier 
review was titled. Deaux's review is titled "Sex and 
gender" in contrast to the earlier Annual Review piece 
on "the psychology of women" (Mednick & Weissman, 
1975). My recent review is titled "Social psychology of 
women and gender." Thus, many of us have recognized 
in a formal way the need to include men's studies and 
feminist approaches to men as part of our field. 

Within the broader context of interdisciplinary work, 
there is a journal Feminist Studies and Stanford has a 
Feminist Studies program. It is not impossible to use the 
feminist label even within conservative institutions. 

For years our annual conference at AWP has formally 
focused on feminist psychology. We ask submitters to 
discuss the feminist elements of their submissions. 
Thus, in this group, we have recognized the importance 
of the public use of the label feminist. 

My radical suggestion is for Division 35. As they work 
toward incorporation, how about incorporating as the 
"Society for Feminist Psychology?" Certainly this will 
entail a bylaws change, and I have no idea how the 
membership as a whole would react to conscious use of 



the label feminist. I have outlined today why I think 
such a decision would enable progress in our field. 



Aboulafia, M. (1983). From domination to recognition. In C.C. Gould 
(Ed.), Beyond domination: New perspectives on women and 
philosophy (pp. 175-188). Totowa, NJ: Rowman & Allanheld. 

Alpert, J.L. & Richardson, M.S. (May 1978). Essence, origin, and the 
name controversy in psychology of women. SASP Newslet- 
ter, 4, (4). 

Bern, S. (1978). Gender schema. Distinguished Publication Award 
Invited Address. Associated for Women in Psychology. 
Pittsburgh. 

Brod, H. (in press). The case for men's studies. 

Deaux, K. (1985). Sex and gender. In M.R. Rosenzweig & L.W. Porter 
(Eds.), Annual review of psychology volume 36 (pp. 49-82). 
Palo Alto: Annual Reviews. 

Donovan, J. (1985). Feminist theory, NY: Frederick Ungar. 

Eagley. (in press). Sex differences in social behavior: A social-role 
interpretation. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. 

Ferree, M.M. & Hess, B.B. (1985). Controversy and coalition: the new 
feminist movement. Boston: Twayne. 

Fine, M. (1985). Reflections on a feminist psychology of women: 

Paradoxes and prospects. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 9, 
107-132. 

Gilbert, L. (1985). Men in dual career families. Hillsdale, NJ: 
Lawrence Erlbaum. 

Gilligan, C. (1982). In a different voice. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard 
University Press. 

Gould, C.C. (Ed.) (1983a). Beyond domination: New perspectives on 
women and philosophy. Totowa, NJ: Rowman & Allanheld. 

Gould, C.C. (1983b). Private rights and public virtues: Women, the 
family and democracy. In C.C. Gould (Ed.), Beyond domina- 
tion. Totowa, NJ: Rowman & Allanheld. 

Graham, D.L.R. & Rawlings, E. (1980). Feminist research methodol- 
ogy. Paper presented at APA, Montreal. 

Gross, A.E., Smith, R.A. & Wallston, B.S. (1983). The men's move- 
ment: Personal vs. political. In J. Freeman (Ed.), Social 
movements (pp. 71-81). NY: Longman. 

Harding, S. (1983). Is gender a variable in conceptions of reality? A 
survey of issues. In C. Gould (Ed.), Beyond domination (pp. 
43-63). Totowa, NJ: Rowman & Allanheld. 

Henley, N.M. (1985). Review essay: Psychology and gender. Signs: 
Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 11, 101-119. 



Barbara Strudler Wallston, Ph.D. in social psychology at Peabody/ 
Vanderbilt, died on January 3, 1987. She was author of more than 
sixty articles and winner of the Distinguished Publication Award 
from the Association for Women in Psychology. Her student Bob 
Baugher, wrote, "An outspoken feminist and supprter of men's issues, 
she was a strong voice for a number of other groups as well: people of 
color, the gay community, students and prisoners.. .Barbara left us 
many things... I know that she would want us to learn something from 
her untimely death: live now, speak out for what you believe, even if 
it is unpopular. Be involved in life". Permission to print this address 
was granted by her brother, Kenneth A. Wallston, Ph.D., professor of 
psychology at Vanderbilt University. 



RESPONSE TO BARBARA WALLSTON'S 
WHAT'S IN A NAME? 

David R. Matteson 

Barbara Wallston has proposed that Division 35 be 
renamed the "Society for Feminist Psychology." It is 
clear that the feminist perspective, including its "concern 
about the subordinate position of women in. . . society 7 ' 
(citing Perreault, 1983), has not only clarified women's 
experience, but men's as well. Thus it makes sense to in- 
clude gender-conscious men's studies within Division 
35. Brod (1987) has observed: 

In inverse fashion to the struggle in women's studies 
to establish the objectivity of women's experiences 
and thereby validate the legitimacy of women's 
experiences as women, much of men's studies 
struggles to establish the subjectivity of men's 
experiences and thereby validate the legitimacy of 
men's experiences as men. 

Thus, to Barbara's four "denotative elements of a 
feminist psychology" (parallel to number 3) I would add 
"valuing men's experience." 

I consider this addition important, for one of the agen- 
das of men's studies is to understand how it is that, 
despite the fact that our society is male-dominated, so 
many men experience themselves as without power. 
Though I reject the use of the word "oppression" to 
describe men's suffering, men do experience "sex role 
strain" (Pleck, 1981) and men rarely think of themselves 
as "on top." Men are trained to view relationships as 
hierarchical and to see as their reference group those 
who are "one step up the ladder." Trained in achieve- 
ment-oriented perceptions, men persistently experience 
themselves as "inferior" to other men. To further 
understand men's subjective experience, it is important 
to recognize that, though our society is accurately 
described as a patriarchy in that it is clearly male- 
dominated and systematically degrades women, it is not 
a patriarchy in the etymological sense of the word ("rule 
of the fathers"), for we are raised in homes in which the 
fathers are absent, and in schools in which male adults 
are scarce. Robbed of parental models and childhood 
mentors for "masculinity," men strive to live out an 
inhuman and unrealistic image of the male role; failing 
to live up to this image results in pervasive insecurity 
about being "real men." But since "big boys don't cry" 
or show fear, this inferiority and insecurity is kept 
hidden from women and from other men, leaving men 
emotionally isolated. 

Though observers often describe men's roles as "supe- 
rior" and their behavior as "dominating," this is not 
usually how men experience themselves. Men (when 



they dare to admit it) frequently experience themselves 
as inferior to other men, insecure about masculinity, and 
alienated from emotional contact. In short, an analysis 
of power in male-female relationships must distinguish 
between social/political power and personal power. 
Though most of the social/political power in our society 
is in the hands of men, most men do not feel personally 
empowered. 

This recognition of men's experience of powerlessness 
within the male hierarchy grows out of the feminist 
analysis of power, with it's valuing of egalitarian (vs. hi- 
erarchical) relationships. Likewise, it is feminism which 
has led to the recognition that the denigration of the 
feminine gets extended, in men, to men's denial of their 
own feelings, and of their caring and 
closeness to other men. In short, men's homophobia 
(including the perception of gay men as "effeminate," 
therefore inferior) and its consequences in men failing to 
learn intimacy, is simply an extension of the degrading 
of the feminine. 

In short, since I believe that the most fruitful approach to 
men's studies is within this feminist analysis, at the 
denotative level, I am comfortable with Barbara's label 
"Society for Feminist Psychology." 

My qualms about Barbara's proposal are at the political 
level. First, will such a label encourage psychologists 
interested in gender studies but not yet identified with 
feminism to go their separate ways, and lose the oppor- 
tunity for their work to be informed by those of us 
convinced of a feminist analysis of power? If so, such 
splintering would only make it easier for those in power 
to ignore us. 

Secondly, would those teaching college courses in men's 
or women's studies, taking their lead from Division 35, 
label them "feminist studies?" I believe to do so would 
be a strategic mistake. It has been reported that, to date, 
of all the men's studies courses offered in USA only one 
has attracted as many men students as women. That one 
exception was a course with a woman co-teacher entitled 
"Understanding Men: For Men and Women" (Note 1). 
It appears that college men are so homophobic they 
won't risk a course on masculinity unless if s clear 
women will be present! I'd hate to guess what percent- 
age of men would show up for a course labeled "femi- 
nist!" 

For these reasons, I lean toward "Society for the Psycho- 
logical Study of Gender" as a better name for the divi- 
sion. I believe that the superiority of the feminist 
analysis of power will be borne out empirically, regard- 
less of the label we choose. 

I want to close with a personal word. I have just re- 
turned from the 12th Men and Masculinity Conference, 



and the meetings of the Council of the NATIONAL 
ORGANIZATION FOR CHANGING MEN. (NOTE 2). 
This was the first M & M Conference to be held without 
Barbara present. Barbara's involvement was a great 
asset to the pro-feminist men's movement. I liked 
working on Council with her and admired her commit- 
ment and ability. We missed her greatly. So it is a 
pleasure to be dialoging with her again via her presenta- 
tion, and brings backs memories of previous dialogs. 

Note 1 : Comment at a workshop of men's studies teachers, Men & 

Masculinity Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, July 1986 referring to a 

course co-taught by Harriet Bernstein at The New School of Social 

Work, New York. 

Note 2: For information, write the NATIONAL ORGANIZATION 

FOR CHANGING MEN, Box 451, Watseka, 111. 60970, or phone (815) 

432-3010. 



REFERENCES 

Brod, Harry (1987). Men's Studies: New Perspectives on Masculin- 
ity. 
Winchester, Massachusetts: Allen & Unwin, p. 6. 

Perreault, G (1983). Contemporary feminist perspectives on women 
and higher 

education. In C Gould (Ed.), Beyond domination. Totowa, NJ : 
Rowman & Allanheld, pp. 283-310. 

Pleck, Joseph H. (1981). The Myth of Masculinity. Cambridge, 
Massachusetts: MIT Press. 

David R. Matteson, Ph.D., University Professor of Psychology and 
Counseling at Governors State University, has facilitated men's 
consciousness- raising groups, has taught a course and authored 
articles in men's studies, and is a council member of the pro-feminist 
NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR CHANGING MEN. 



COMMENTS ON WALLSTON'S 
PAPER 

Paul Green 

Two points at the outset: First, I would like to state that 
I have great respect for the work of Helen Hughes and 
the publication The Creative Woman. I first became 
acquainted with this magazine several years ago when it 
published an article by the late Mimi Kaplan (a former 
GSU librarian). Second over a decade ago I was proud 
to be part of the then Women's Studies Program, when I 
offered a course entitled "Patterns in Forcible Rape." It 
was one of the first courses of its kind in the State that 
dealt with the cultural and sociological aspects of the 
crime of rape (today these types of courses are taught in 
many universities and community colleges). 

I make the first two points to clear the air as to what I am 
about to say. I hate labels and sweeping generalizations 
that simplify every discussion into a perceived good vs. 
evil debate. Decades ago labor leaders, pushing a strike, 
had their supporters sing the old working man's song- 
" Which Side Are You On." That competitive "either-or" 
decision making choice does not fit the debate on the 
women's movement or the term feminism. It's not an 



10 



either-or situation -there is a great deal of gray area that 
needs to be discussed dispassionately and without 
name calling or simplifying. Many individuals who call 
themselves feminists are not going to like what I'm 
about to say - but it's a brief, honest opinion of the 
Wallston paper and the use of names. 

For years I have been critical of mainly middle class 
women who attempt to pass themselves off as gender 
revolutionaries - they are not. They have spent an 
incredible amount of their time making title changes 
such as chairperson vs. chairman, critical issues for their 
movement. Others have written in the genre of what I 
call the "all men are beasts" syndrome. They have at- 
tempted to make the word masculine a pejorative term. 
Others have included lesbian rights or pro-choice as 
integral parts of their "feminist doctrine" and key ingre- 
dients of their movement. 

My argument with the above is not to criticize anyone 
for what they believe but to suggest that these individu- 
als should not be shocked that many men and women 
do not accept their entire package and, in fact, have 
often turned against pro-women issues because of the 
"take it all or nothing" attitude of many feminist leaders. 
(By the way, that is why ERA never passed the Illinois 
legislature - it was the proponents not the proposals that 
gave Phyllis Schlafly the ammunition she needed to 
defeat passage.) 

Wallston talks of women's oppression as a cornerstone 
of her argument. She wants to "radicalize" the women's 
movement through a name change. She wants to 
endorse the term "feminist" as in feminist psychology to 
replace the word "women" where ever possible. My 
reaction - who cares! 

I believe the real revolution for women's causes is not in 
what psychology professionals call themselves - rather it 
is in the area of wages, health care, child care, economic 
opportunity, career choice, etc. Moreover, the women's 
movement is needed most at the lower end of the 
economic scale where the growth of single female heads 
of household has become the key variable in determin- 
ing high crime rates, poverty, poor education for chil- 
dren, etc. 



A recent Bureau of Labor statistics study reveals that for 
the first time in history a majority of American mothers 
(52%) with infants are working or looking for work. 
Five years ago this figure was 43% - while a decade ago 
it was 32%. Similar percentage increases have occurred 
in other mother/children age level categories. To me 
this is the real revolution. 

Working women or those who want to be working 
women need support. Terminology is irrelevant to 
them. Yet a code word like "feminist" can create politi- 
cal and legislative barriers to legitimate women's 
concerns that otherwise would pass quickly into law. 
No one - or single group - speaks for all women or men. 
What bothers me most is that critical women's needs 



requiring coalition building and compromise often 
become relegated to a secondary status while individu- 
als or groups of individuals attempt to dominate a 
critical policy or social agenda with their own philo- 
sophical dogma or even more absurdly with their choice 
of titles. 

Individuals like Wallston are obviously bright, caring, 
and well meaning. My suggestion would be that she 
and others like her spend their considerable energies 
and talents in substantive areas affecting women. If 
there is a male "Bastille" in America that needs to be 
stormed it will be accomplished by interaction of 
activists with mainstream women and men who face 
life's everyday realities that sometimes include gender 
discrimination. It will not be accomplished by self- 
proclaimed radical women isolating themselves behind 
terminology barricades stressing the importance of a 
name change and looking for allies from the "feminist 
men's movement." 



Paul Green, Ph.D., is Professor of Public Administration at GSU and 
director of the Institute for Public Policy. 



REACTION TO BARBARA WALLSTON'S 
ARTICLE 

Harriet Gross 

Names matter. Barbara Wallston's concern, therefore, to 
include "feminist" in the term for a psychology about 
and for women is most defensible. "Feminist" does 
convey the radical edge she argues for and is therefore, 
in my view too, the term of choice for contemporary 
analyses of gender-related issues. "Gender" on the other 
hand, is anemic - devoid of the critical implications, the 
searching stance, and the status quo questioning import 
of the scholarship meant to be designated by the term, 
but intended by it as well. Just because social science 
concepts (as well as ordinary language for that matter) 
both describe and constitute a reality, we need to build 
into the reality we aim for the terms that help bring it 
into being. 

No longer weighed down by inappropriate analogies to 
the natural sciences, to positivist posturing, or to a 
misguided search for "objectivity," we must, I believe, 
identify what it is we do, by how we say it. "Feminist" 
links our intentions for our scholarship in process, to the 
valued traditions of our militant forebearers, just as it 
embraces that militance as our own. Names matter. 



Harriet Gross, Ph.D., is University Professor of Sociology and 
Women's Studies at GSU and the founder of the Women's Resource 
Center. She has published extensively on the sociology of work and 
family. 



11 



St 



cert* 

H I am independent! 
I con live alone and 
I love to work. 

Mary Cossott ^=ep 






12 





POETRY 





THE MOON IS BLUE 



When I was young, at the beginning of time. . . 

Eons before mountains, and valleys, and oceans, 

Spirit was put in a bottle, a shape - 

It was woman. 

And a "cork" was put in the top 

so Spirit could not escape 

back to what it was 

before it was put in form. 

At some point, 

Spirit once again will be free, 

All the corks will pop. 

And it will emerge 

from all of the woman shapes. 

It will have learned much in that form. 
And when it emerges, 
It will be very developed. 
Even the sages have no idea 
of its power, its manifestations. 

I have been told these things in dreams and images. 

It is a mystery. 

I myself can hardly wait 

to see how Spirit has been transformed 

by being in the container called woman. 

Even it doesn't know 

how it will turn out. 

At a time WHEN THE MOON WAS BLUE, 

the saga began. 

It is about to be known. 

The rumblings from the containers called woman 

are like an earthquake. 

Which goes forth, moves, and cracks, and shifts 

And then all is quiet. . . for a while. 

Once upon a time, WHEN THE MOON WAS BLUE, 
the story began 
and it is true. 



Judith Helene Havorim 



13 



FORGETTING 



to Mark 




DIALOGUE IN SOLITUDE 



to Mark for our second anniversary 



Time lengthens when I am alone. 

Letters lose their distinctive character, 

my pen would draw a flowing line, 

something in me would sleep. 

I see you disappear into plants 

growing in green lines for the sun. 

A rock splits in my hand 

and reveals its layered heart. 

The clouds turn. 

Water leaves white roots in the earth 

while its trunk runs on, gnarling 

the ground, twisting toward its branches, 

leafing in a place I do not follow. 

Here the mud knots into brown eggs. 

I draw brown words out of pale mud, 

forgetting each letter with each mark. 

Hidden in the green of weeds, you whirl, 

plants passing in a blur. 

White branches steady the ground 

that stops in a rock. 

The rock captures the light 

and draws roots like ribs 

to its sides. The clouds circle 

overhead. You watch the rock 

ribbing the earth with light. 

From across the field, 

you touch me, and I begin remembering 

what I never knew. 

I draw words out of the earth: 

Peel away my layered heart . 

Pamela Portwood 



My solitude is always relative to you. 

Though I have known claustrophobia 

in sharing our house 

and have chosen to sit, alone, among trees, 

I knew the depth of voice needed to reach you. 

I could measure the distance between 

which created solitude. 

Without you, I am impatient of solitude 
and know the luxury of sharing our lives: 
bodies uncertain in sleeping alone, 
the dialogue that continues 
when the other leaves the room. 

I show you things in your absence: 
patches of ferns tinting the air green, 
mandalas of eucalyptus leaves 
flashing in the breeze. 
Here the path narrows, 
here we stoop under a massive fir, 
here my life goes on without you, 
here a part of me waits, incomplete. 



Tucson, 1983 



Pamela Portwood 




14 




VEIL OF AN OCTOBER MOON 



A lace shadow 
Carved of caution, 
Blindness and tremor 
Becomes me as it 
Writes the reasons 
And questions 
Into my face. 



Patricia Coakley Meyer 




DINOSAURS AND GRANDPARENTS 



A NEW CREATION 



". . .as old as you, grandma?" 

when I take my grandson to the museum. 



How old I must seem to him. 
I think: if I put my foot over 
the dinosaur's I'd move 
in the same direction. 




At night 

we go down a long slide 

into a secret chamber 



We have tickets for this ride 
but can't find ourselves 
in the trick mirrors 



What do children know about pain 

in the bones of the old, 

or how far they risk walking alone? 

When my husband and I walk 

so close together even the wind can't 

get in, it's because we feel everything 

under us moving. 



In the silence of the night 

I hear the earth turn. 

It's then I make the connection. 





Sue Saniel Elkind 



We lie down in fetal position 
snails back to back 
eyes open waiting 



Even though we've shared 
this space 50 years 
there's always that dread 



until sunrise 
another creation 
another miracle 



when all the fears of night 
turn into leaves on limbs 
of trees and (for awhile) 
we're safe again 



Sue Saniel Elkind 




15 



A SERIES 



Gwen John, the artist, dreams of Claudine Claudel in an insane 
asylum, while Rodin prepares to receive an honorary degree 

Living alone colours the dreams. I dream 
of nuns singing on the beach, of a cat pawing 
a leafless twig, of Claudine Claudel 
having her hair combed in an insane asylum. 

Repetition in a series of subjects fascinates me, 
but not in life. It is true, I was one of Rodin's 
lovers, his models, his muses, his drones. 
Who could refuse to love those engorged hands? 

Claudine and I were among the hypnotized, like primed 
white canvases tinted with vermilion. I heard 
the rumors; she sculpted and he signed his name. 
He once copied my nude gouache self portrait. 

I am lucky to be a painter, with a passion 

for umber, with an attraction for the corner 

of my room. I always knew enough not to be afraid 

of losing, or I would be lost. 



Claudine Claudel, the sculptor, dreams of Gwen John 
in a small Parisienne room, while Rodin 
prepares to receive an honorary degree 

Living confined heightens the dreams. I dream 
of bones floating on the sea, of swiftly brushing 
a model's hair from his face, of Gwen John 
stroking a spotted cat in a sunlit room. 

Repetition disgusts me. For years, I smoothed 
the clay - day after day after day. I sculpted 
cities you could hold in your hands, heads 
shrouded by marble, the hollows of my own eyes. 

He signed his name. He made his fortunes. 
I had nothing to eat, except my own heart. 
I had nothing to drink, my veins long emptied. 
You think paranoids don't have enemies? 

I'm lucky to be alive. Gwen John 
was always afraid of becoming like me. Rodin 
was merely afraid of not becoming like me. 
I was afraid of losing, of being lost. 



16 



Rodin prepares to receive an honorary degree 

What we are afraid of losing, loses us. 
I suddenly see these words as clearly 
as if they were etched on a mausoleum. 

My mistress brushes my hair. 
The cat strokes against my leg. 
I've noticed I never dream anymore. 

The angles of my heart soften. 
The lights of my blood darken. 
My own muscles shimmer with a tenderness 

that reminds me of her, 
of them; of all of them. 
How could there not be passion? 

Oh, those strong sweet repetitions. 
I always gave - gave more than I took. 
I never signed my name to her work, 

except once. 

I never stole a stupid nude gouache 

that was very good. 

I've never been afraid of losing 

or of being lost, 

only of being found out. 



Ruthann Robson 



17 



PERSONAL 



EXPERIENCE 



THROUGH THE FENCE-TRESPASS 
FOR PEACE 

March 12, 1988-Memoir at the Nevada Test Site 

Ellen Woodward Moaney 

"We are confronted here, my friends, with two 
courses. At the end of the one lies hope, faint hope, 
if you will, uncertain hope, hope surrounded with 
dangers, if you insist. At the end of the other lies, 
so far as I am able to see, no hope at all." George 
Kennan A Proposal for International Disarma- 
ment-1976 



NoTrespassifig 



epartmeik Sf- 





With joined hands, we stood, along the four-strand 
barbed wire fence, a human wall, stretching as far as the 
eye could see. Beyond the fence was open desert and 
then the mountains. Between us and forever were the 
guards, armed sheriffs, and Department of Energy 
SWAT teams, eyeing our human wall in stony silence. 
We were standing on the edge of the Nevada Test Site, a 
desert area the size of Rhode Island. We had come to 
demand an end to underground nuclear testing. Thou- 
sands of people stood, some quietly, others singing, 
while drums beat a rhythm in the background. Then 
there was silence, a quiet so complete that it commanded 
my attention. In the slow motion of the quietness people 
stepped forward. As support people reached the fence 
and separated the barbed wire, time seemed to stop. I 
stepped through the fence, hand in hand with my dear 
friend, Michele. Our trespass begun, we walked for- 
ward, slowly, unhurriedly onto this sacred Indian land 
that is regularly desecrated by nuclear explosions deep 
within her. Michele and I had just committed Civil 
Disobedience. All around us people were being ar- 
rested. Still holding hands, Michele and I walked 
carefully and deliberately out into the desert. We thus 
became part of a group of 150 that walked almost 2 
miles onto the Nevada Test Site on March 12, 1988, 

18 



thereby joining the 1264 people on that day who, after 
thoughtful consideration, had decided that the moral 
obligation to this earth and the people that inhabit it was 
the highest law and far exceeded the law of the land. 
We had joined, on that day, a small but growing number 
of people in this country who feel so strongly about 
these violations that they are willing to be arrested. In 
1987 the number of people arrested at actions pleading 
for a cessation of nuclear madness was 5300. 

The action had occurred at the entrance to the Nevada 
Test Site, where a "Peace Camp" had been erected in the 
desert. On this remote spot, 65 miles north of Las Vegas 
hundreds of bright colored tents scattered across the 
desert had assured us that we had arrived at our desti- 
nation. One long fence boundary, as long as the eye 
could see, had been decorated with hundreds of ban- 
ners, calling for an end to testing, asking for peace, and 
proclaiming the organizations in attendance. I met 
people from all over the United States and Canada. 
Thousands of people had taken time from work or 
school, incurring the expense of making the trip, in a 
simple attempt to prick the conscience of the American 
people and to demand an end to Nuclear Testing. 

Michele and I were apprehended an hour into our walk 
by a DOE SWAT officer in desert camouflage driving a 
similarly camouflaged dune buggy, who yelled orders at 
us, as he nervously fingered his gun. We were held, on 
the ground and handcuffed, in the desert, anxiety 
building, for another hour while the rest of our people 
were rounded up. We were then loaded onto buses and 
driven to containment camps and unloaded into sepa- 
rate holding pens, one for men and another for women. 
These pens were made of 12 foot high chain link topped 
with barbed wire. People who commit civil disobedi- 
ence to be arrested seldom have desires of escaping! It 
was at this time that we saw how large the group was. 
In the women's pen alone, at least six hundred women 
were already waiting. We were again loaded onto 
buses, still handcuffed, and ultimately bused nearly 150 
miles to the county seat in Tonopah. On our long bus 
ride to Tonopah, sitting in the front of the bus as we 
moved along the vast desert highway I could see that 
the bus in front of us was followed by four cars. I was 
startled to realize these cars contained our own support 
people. I learned from the bus driver that this was the 
same for all the buses. What a caravan we must have 
made. Twenty-six buses, loaded with arrestees and each 
bus followed by three or four private vehicles, support- 
ing us with horns and gestures, streaking through the 
Nevada desert. 

It was at Tonopah that we were unloaded, amidst wild 
cheering from those hundreds who had already been 
processed, greeted as though we were conquering 
heroes. Here we were charged, and then, anticlimacti- 



cally, charges were dismissed and we were released. 
After six hours of handcuffs, and other treatment de- 
signed to build fear and anxiety, we were released and 
finally allowed to re-join the other members of our 
affinity group. Nineteen of the 44 people who had made 
this trip from San Diego together had chosen to commit 
civil disobedience. Our group included our minister- 
intern, a public health doctor, and a 62 year old grand- 
mother. 

The principles of this action were non-violence. Per- 
sonal non-violence and non-violence towards property. 
We were reminded that if we could not adhere to these 
principles that perhaps we should consider another 
action. As one of the non-violent trainers from the San 
Diego area I was again and again impressed, throughout 
this action, how secure a non-violent agreement is. Non- 
violence provides this sense of security in an insecure 
situation. It provides a common ground of fearless 
communication. It is a belief, a hope, and a code of 
behavior with which you have tools that you can rely on 
in predicaments. An example of this was provided by 
the officer who had arrested us. I mentioned his nerv- 
ousness earlier. Because of our commitment to non- 
violence it was easy to find non-threatening behaviors to 
mirror back to him. Soft voices, gentle words, and, as 
always, singing peace songs. All of these had the effect 
of relaxing him. In addition, it gave others that joined 
our group after arrest different ways to look at him. 
Instead of perceiving him as a hard-nosed representative 
of authority we could look at him as some one who also 
had a "bit of the truth", and a job to do, but was stressed 
and nervous. (Incidentally, our committed beliefs, our 
songs and the reassuring nature of our behavior, 
brought a tear to the eye of one of the other sheriffs.) 

This action, part of ten days of action, was organized by 
the American Peace Test and was called the "Reclaim 
the Desert" action. In past actions the arrestees were 
detained in the test site town of Mercury, a mile into the 
site, and then released. This massive bussing utilizing 
26 buses was an effort to discourage our action. The 
"fence trespass" had followed a rally where Robert 
Blake, Terry Garr, Casey Kaseum, Cesar Chavez, Daniel 
Ellsberg and William Sloane Coffin had addressed us. 
Then they too had chosen to commit civil disobedience 
and join us in being arrested. 

There were many aspects of this event that impressed 
me besides the overwhelming commitment to non- 
violence. One was the concern and caring for all people 
that the organizers of the event, American Peace Test, 
demonstrated. Faced with the fact that 1264 participants 
had been transported 150 miles away, they immediately 
organized transportation back to the peace camp. By 
midnight over 1000 people had been loaded into private 
and rented vehicles on the road back to the Peace Camp. 
Anyone who needed a ride received one, and no one 
was overlooked. I was later told that the road from the 



Peace Camp to Tonopah that night was one long ribbon 
of lights. 

People have asked me, what difference did you make? I 
can only answer that the people that encountered our 
massive group were impacted and impressed. The 
sheriff on our bus had told me that she had been told 
that we were a peaceful people. Some people in the 
town told me they respected and agreed with our action. 
Our government spent $100,000 handling us on this 
action alone. The actions get larger each time, and more 
people are exposed to the non-violent philosophy and 
the deep convictions of people who are willing to be 
arrested for them. Did we end testing? Not this time. 
Will we end testing? I believe we will. As more and 
more people make the trip and take their stand, testing 
will cease. When the ridiculousness of nuclear testing is 
seen in relationship to the effort to achieve a test ban 
treaty, testing will cease. Would I do it again? The 
answer is an emphatic Yes! I will lend my body and 
voice to other actions until testing ceases. 

The state of Nevada has chosen not to prosecute at this 
time, because they are not equipped to handle such large 
numbers of our people. They are aware that we will use 
the courts as a forum for peace. I can envision the scene. 
When asked, how do you plead, the many responses 
would include, "I plead for humankind," or "for an end 
to testing," "for peace" or "I plead for the sacredness of 
the world." 



About Ellen Woodward Moaney 

I am a single mother of two nearly grown daughters. I work full time 
to provide support for them and attend school full time, finishing up 
an undergraduate degree that has been interrupted many times. 
When completed in 1989 it will have been 28 years in the works. 
I chair the very large Social Responsibility Service Committee of the 
First Unitarian Church in San Diego, (the third largest Unitarian- 
Universalist congregation in the nation). As William Sloane Coffin 
commented recently, Unitarians are short on theology but big on 
ethics. I also serve on the Board of the Peace Resource Center in San 
Diego, a clearing house for peace activities, publications, videos, and 
other peace programs. We have had a very popular Value Through 
Toys campaign in recent years, developed to show how toys of 
violence lead to violence. I also am an active member of Congressman 
Jim Bates Advisory Committee on Central America, a congressman 
with integrity, committed to No Contra Aid Now, or Ever. I write a 
regular editorial column for the San Diego State University Daily 
Aztec, a school newspaper with a circulation of 35,000. My column 
deals with political opinion on peace, and on values that lead to, or 
destroy peace. I estimate that I spend an additional 15 to 20 hours a 
week on peace work. I believe that we can never achieve peace by 
practicing for war, so I practice for peace and prod others to do the 
same. 

I am an avid gardener and maintain an acre orchard /garden in San 
Diego, complete with peacocks, horses and rare plants. 



\9 





FICTION 





SUMMER TIME 



Maria C. Artigas 



I must have been thirteen the year Eduardo came to my 
home to see me. He was my first love, but I do not have 
good memories of him. 

As soon as school ended in November, my parents took 
us, my sister, my brother and me, to San Pedro de 
Colalao, a small Indian village four hours from 
Tucuman. We stayed there until classes started the 
following year in March. Colalao was like any other 
Spanish town. Around the plaza, it had the school, a 
church, and the houses of the well-to-do families from 
Tucuman. Beyond the main streets there were Indians' 
shacks, and ranchos where poor European immigrants 
had taken refuge. The immigrants kept small shops 
with goods for the summer families and for the tourists 
who came each Sunday afternoon to visit the town. 

Colalao was surrounded by mountains whose silver and 
coal made them look like large rainbows. Two rivers 
wrapped around the village on both sides as if isolating 
it from the rest of the world. Colalao had no electric 
lights, no phones, and the post office opened only from 
nine to five. Communication with the city was by bus 
that came two days a week with the latest news. Indians 
from the mountains came to the village during the 
summer to be the servants of the families from 
Tucuman. 

The houses of the summer families had been built at the 
turn of the century. Some of them resembled the ones 
constructed in Europe during the Art Nouveau years. 
The house of the Gutierrez family had elaborated lattice 
work on the walls. Others were Spanish style with 
indoor patios, terrazos floors, and water wells. Ours 
was what was called in those days "a chalet." It had five 
bedrooms and a large living room with a dining area. 
On the front, towards the street, it had a galeria with 
arches, granite floors, and red curved roof tiles. It had 
been built in 1930. After my father acquired wealth 
through business, my mother wanted to return to the 
place where she had spent her childhood years. She also 
wanted us to participate in the life of this small and 
selected community of about twenty families. 

In the village I was free from the cares of the rest of the 
year. In there, I woke up at any time and went where I 
wished. Early in the morning, still in my slumber, I 
would hear the metallic noise of a rooster and the song 
of the swallows. There were days I sat on the steps of 
the galeria among marigolds and daisies that Jose, the 
gardener, had planted, and looked at the plaza where 
dark Indian women with their children on their back 

20 




carried eggs and fruits to town. At other times, I walked 
narrow paths where not even horses would go. Bushes 
and weeds scraped my legs and arms, and when I 
arrived at the top of a hill, I lay down and just looked at 
the sky. I still remember one day when I got lost in the 
mountains while chasing butterflies. In the afternoon, I 
went with other girls to the river for a splash. And 
when the sun went down, my delight was to watch 
hummingbirds rob food from flowers. Late at night after 
I rode my horse, I sat in the garden looking at the stars. I 
still believe, for a reason that science cannot dispel, that 
there are more stars in the Southern Hemisphere than in 
any other part in the world. 

There was a war going on in Europe, and once in a 
while, I would hear my mother and her friends talk 
about "red" doctors who had come to the village from 
Spain. Other times I saw my father walking in the plaza 
with them, but that was all I saw of the war. 

It was during one of those summers that I talked with 
Eduardo for the first time. It was the year that my 
mother allowed young men to come to our home before 
and after dinner. If they were not too many, the ones 
that came before dinner could stay for the meal. Then, 
after our maids had cleared the table and turned off the 
kerosene lamps, we sat in the galeria . Stars or the moon 
were our only light. Young men brought their guitars 
and serenaded us. At times, Carlos or Roberto, my 
brother's friends, would dance vigorously a malambo, 
the rhythmic gaucho dance. At other times, we sang. I 



still can hear the music of a Vidala. " Bien haya ese 
sabio. Vidalita. que teng a el poder de aliviarme el 
alma. Vidalita. del mal querer ...." 

But Eduardo, whose house was just across the street 
from ours, on the other side of the plaza, never came to 
our evening gatherings. 

Eduardo's home was not as large as ours, since it had 
been built in 1870, but his mother had decorated it as if it 
were a doll house. It had lace and organdy curtains in 
every room. She would open the door facing the street 
in the evenings. In there I saw a large dining room with 
a marble table and green and yellow porcelain dishes 
decorating the walls. One of the rooms had a pink 
bedspread with ruffles at the edges. Eduardo's mother 
and his sister, Maruja, came out of the house in the after- 
noon and sat on a bench on the sidewalk. They embroi- 
dered until it was dark. Maruja never came to the river 
with me or with any other girl. She only left the house 
with her mother. During the day both carried flowered 
parasols that protected them from the sun. In church, 
they had a pew with a red velvet couch with their names 
engraved on the black wood. Once in a while they 
would stop to talk with my mother before or after the 
service, but only rarely would they talk with any one 
else. 

One day, while I was playing on my grandmother's 
Victrola, a fox-trot, that my father had bought for me the 
Sunday before from Tucuman, Eduardo came into the 
house. Our maids were busy preparing the meal, and I 
was alone in the living room. I had played "Cheek-to- 
Cheek" ten times and imagined myself Ginger Rogers 
dancing with Fred Astair. The warm December air came 
through the window moving the lace draperies. I took a 
deep breath to better smell the fragrance of jasmine that 
impregnated the house. Then, I closed my eyes. At that 
moment, Eduardo had walked toward where I sat. It 
was as if he woke me up from a dream. He told me he 
could teach me about the latest steps he had learned in 
Punta del Este the year before. I was sure he knew all 
about fashion and dances. I stood up and smiling, ac- 
cepted his invitation. He held my waist and while his 
arm barely touched my arm, a tumult of emotions 
overcame me, and I could not follow him. 

I knew how to dance. I had taken dance lessons for 
three years with Mile. Condue. I had danced with my 
brother and cousins, but I was afraid to look at 
Eduardo's eyes. I could not hear the music. I only felt 
his arms around me. He wondered why I could not 
follow his steps. I whispered some incoherent syllables 
and, almost exhausted, sank on a sofa twisting my 
necklace. I heard my mother's voice calling me for 
dinner. Eduardo said he could not stay. 

The next time he came was after dinner. While Carlos 
played the guitar, Eduardo opened the wooden gate that 



separated the garden from the street and sat on the steps 
of the galeria next to me. The moon shone brilliantly 
but I could not see his face. The fragrance of eucalyptus 
embraced me, and the balmy breeze of the night created 
a feeling of delight. His slacks touched my skirt. I was 
happy. He never said a word, but I did not care and 
wished to stay like this forever. 

The following morning, I walked on lonely paths along 
Ei Rio Viejo . I crossed a wooden bridge and was glad I 
had no homework to do. I saw Eduardo's image every- 
where. I wished to find him in those roads. I heard the 
bell of the church with the gentle sound of the Angelus. 
It seemed like a prayer calling me from eternity. A 
prayer that I had hoped would last a lifetime. I thought 
little of anything else. The water in the river was clearer 
than before and the smell of flowering-rush seemed like 
the aroma of incense of Sunday's mass. Yet, for some 
reason I had a sadness I could not understand. 

A week after that night, Eduardo came again. This time 
he brought his sister with him. My mother and two of 
her friends had decided that instead of staying in the 
galeria we would walk to the bridge on one of the 
rivers. As we were crossing the plaza, we knocked on 
the doors of the already darkened houses of our neigh- 
bors to ask them to join us in our promenade. At that 
moment, Eduardo came close to me, held my arm, and 
asked me to walk next to him. We stayed behind the 
group, but not too far so everyone could see us. He 
started a conversation that seemed odd. He said, "Do 
you think that holding hands is a sin?" 

How silly, I thought. It had never occurred to me. At 
least the nuns in the convent where I had gone to school 
never taught me that. They made us confess sins against 
the sixth and ninth commandments with splendorous 
details that even our imagination strained for, but 
holding hands? I was unsure. 

"Then," Eduardo continued, "How about kissing?" 

"Well," I said, "I think it is." 

He did not think so. He pursued, "Do you think that if I 
hold you very close to me that it will be a sin?" 

I could speak no longer. A tremor took hold of me. I 
had a slight happy fear. By then we had arrived at the 
river. 

The group sat under the willows and sang "La Verbena 
de la Paloma." Eduardo and I sat together far enough 
from them but not too far for them to see us. Then he 
said in a whisper, "Lef s hold hands." I felt dizzy and 
wanted to run, but stayed and wished to stay. I took a 
deep breath. I do not remember how long we sat there. 
At one moment, we all returned home. 



21 



That night I could not go to sleep. I knew I had done 
something wrong. I wanted to talk with someone, but I 
was afraid to tell my mother. I wanted to be with 
Eduardo again though. But I waited in vain. He never 
came back. I waited for him the following day and the 
day after that. I waited week after week. He never came 
to see me again. I thought for a while he had left the 
village. 

One day I took courage and walked next to his home. I 
saw him with his sister and mother on the sidewalk. He 
waved at me and said, "Hola." But the look on his 
mother's face made me keep on walking. I wished to 
know what she was embroidering. Another time I was 
standing on the sidewalk in front of my home, and he 
went by riding a horse, came close to me and said, "Tu 
eres mi novia." I tried to talk to him but he kept on 
riding. I sat on the curb, took a dry branch and played 
with the dirt. I looked at the plaza and saw in the dis- 
tance his house. His mother and Maruja were already at 
the front door. My mother wanted me to join her for the 
evening novena, but I wanted to be by myself. Would 
he come again? I thought. 

Every day, I walked to the mountains and climbed 
slowly the slopes and when I arrived at the top of a hill, 
turned around and looked at the town whose houses 
became smaller at each turn. I climbed until I could not 
distinguish them any longer. Then they were just 
memories, but I kept a secret hope. Once in a while I 
would hear the echo of an Indian voice. 

When time to return to the city arrived, I was sad. That 
morning, while my parents were closing the house for 
the winter, I rode my horse towards EJ. Rio Viejo . I 
looked at the green bushes and the trees. I felt the warm 
breeze and the silence and wanted to keep that moment 
with me forever. I did not want to leave. 

School started and my free life ended. It was my first 
year in high school. Days went by fast. Once in a while 
I walked in La. Plaza Independencia, the plaza in the 
center of Tucuman, thinking that I might see Eduardo 
again, but they were only wishes. After a few months, I 
forgot about him. When November arrived, I was 
anxious to return to the village where there was no 
school, no rules, no social engagements, just the moun- 
tains and me. 

But when I arrived in Colalao everything spoke of 
Eduardo again. I wanted to see him, but he was not in 
the village, my brother told me. I went to look for 
Zulema, one of my closest friends, and while we walked 
around the plaza, I asked her where Eduardo was. She 
said that his mother had sent him and Maruja to Mar del 
Plata because they had arrived at an age that they had to 
meet the right people. And Zulema, almost guessing my 
thoughts, added, "You liked him?" I did not answer. 



"His mother thought you were too old for him," she 
continued. How can this be, I wondered? I knew for 
sure that he was three years older than me. How could 
anyone know I liked him? I remember Maruja at that 
moment. She had been at the river that night. I left 
Zulema with unfinished words, ran home, and lay down 
on my bed. 

I knew I was not as pretty as his sister. I was ugly. I was 
too fat, too old, too tall, too dark. I wished I knew how 
to embroider. For days I cried and did not leave the 
room. In the evening I went to the galeria to please my 
mother, but I could not stay. As soon as I heard Carlos 
playing the guitar, I left for my room. 

From that day on I wanted to have a pink bedspread and 
started collecting porcelain dishes. And even today 
when I see a green or yellow porcelain dish, I buy it for 
my home. I wanted to buy a parasol. My mother 
thought it was odd. 

Years went by, I was married, and my life moved me 
away from Tucuman. My husband, a professor at the 
University of Buenos Aires, was a political exile in 
Madrid. One day I returned home to visit my parents 
with my four sons. My sister took me for tea to the Polo 
Country Club next to the same chain of mountains that 
surrounded Colalao, but closer to the city. We watched 
a polo game during the afternoon, and I recognized from 
a distance old friends. After the game, I sat on a bench 
on the patio of the club while my children romped on 
the lawn. At that moment I saw Eduardo coming 
towards me. His hair was gray, but he had the same 
smile on his face. He wore breeches and black leather 
boots and held a whip in his hand. As he sat on the 
bench next to me, my face flared with emotion of the 
past 

"You have not changed," he said. 

"You are the same," he repeated with a strange look. He 
wanted to continue the conversation we had started 
almost twenty years before. I stood up and left. I looked 
for my children and entered the dining room where my 
sister was with her friends. 

And recently, more than thirty years later, on another 
trip home from Madrid, as we recalled memories of our 
childhood years, my sister said, "Eduardo knows you 
are in town. He sent you his love." I do not want to 
hear from him, I told her. Do not tell him that you have 
mentioned his name to me, I do not want to hear from 
him again. 



Marie Artigas wrote SUMMER TIME when she was a doctoral 
candidate in Spanish at the University of Virginia. The story, about 
Argentina forty years ago, won First Prize in the Jefferson Literary 
Society Competition. 



22 



CRITICISM-LITERARY 




ON ADRIENNE RICH: 
DREAMS OF A COMMON 
LANGUAGE 

Jon Lee Hall 



Adrienne Rich has had an unusual range of experiences 
in her life. She has been a Radcliffe undergraduate; a 
wife and the mother of three sons; a widely read poet 
who has received numerous awards, including the 
National Book Award; a university professor; a social 
activist and a war resister; a feminist and a lesbian 
(Martin 171). Tying all of these experiences together is 
her artistry as a poet. She believes that "poetry is above 
all a concentration of the power of language which is the 
power of our ultimate relationship to everything in the 
universe." 

Her poetry is a poetry that talks about the history and 
ideals of the feminist struggle. She defines feminism as 
a: 

"Pluralistic ethos that cuts across divisions of 
race, caste, and nationality. Radical feminism is 
about transforming all relationships and about 
the creation of a human society in which human 
needs are met, and in which there is no exploita- 
tion of one group of human beings by another, 
beginning with women." 



"I am a feminist because I feel endangered, 
psychically and physically, by this society, and 
because I believe that the women's movement is 
saying we have come to an edge of history when 
men — insofar as they are embodiments of the 
patriarchal idea — have become dangerous to 
children and other living things, themselves 
included; and that we can no longer afford to 
keep the female principle enclosed within the 
confines of the tight, little post-industrial family, 
or within any male-induced notion of where the 
female principle is valid and where it is not." 

Central to her poetic and political vision is the necessity 
for a change in language to create a more political 
awareness of women's experience (Martin 230). She also 
feels that this vision can illuminate possibilities for 
new human and communal relationships." 



For the past thirty-six years, Adrienne Rich has written 
about the "separation of mind and body, the bifurcation 
of society into active masculinity and dependent femi- 
ninity, the loss of human connection to nature, the 
illusion of romantic love with its promise of a protector, 
the lives of both extraordinary and ordinary women, the 
necessity of disengaging from a destructive culture, the 
interpenetration of art and politics as well as private and 
public life, and the importance of creating social and 
artistic forms that express women's actual experience" 
(Martin 171). 

Charles Altieri has said of her that she combines "rich, 
rhetorical cadences and public themes with a sense of 
concrete, personal passions." She was born on May 16, 
1929, in Baltimore, Maryland, to Arnold Rich and Helen 
Jones. Her father was a pathologist at Johns Hopkins 
University, and she grew up in a financially affluent 
family. However, because her family was Jewish, and 
Baltimore was an anti-Semitic city, the family was also 
on the fringes of Baltimore society. 

She began her poetry experience at an early age. In Of 
Woman Born (1976), a collection of essays written about 
the institution of motherhood, Rich describes her father 
as a man with strong opinions and elaborate theories 
about how to educate children. She compares him to 
Bronson Alcott, the 19th century transcendentalist and 
father of Louisa May Alcott, who took his family to live 
in an experimental commune to exist on fruit while he 
pursued his educational and social theories. Rich admits 
that she, like Louisa May Alcott, resented her father's 

23 



experiments. He insisted that she and her younger sister 
Cynthia be educated at home until the fourth grade. 
They were taught by their mother, who had been a 
promising musician until she married Rich and gave up 
her career to be a wife and mother. They were tutored 
by their father who urged Adrienne to "work, work/ 
harder than anyone has worked before." Arnold Rich 
believed in strict poetic form and was totally against free 
verse. He encouraged her to write poetry. Under his 
tutelage, Adrienne read primarily Victorian writers, 
such as Tennyson, Keats, Arnold, Rossetti, Swinburne, 
Carlyle, and Pater. She began writing poetry striving to 
meet her father's high standards and beliefs. 

After the fourth grade Adrienne went to the Roland Park 
Country School, which she describes as "a good old- 
fashioned girls' school that gave us fine role models of 
single women who were intellectually impassioned." 
She then went to Radcliffe "where she didn't see a 
female teacher for four years." She read and studied the 
poets: Frost, Dylan Thomas, Donne, Auden, MacLeish, 
Stevens, and Yeats. 

In 1951, she graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Radcliffe, 
and "A Change of World," her first volume of poetry, 
was published. W.H. Auden selected this volume for 
the Yale Younger Poets Series. In his foreword to the 
book, Auden praised her craftsmanship, her consistency 
of diction and tone, and her restraint from striving for 
her own personal style. Her poetry was formed by the 
male poets she studied while at Radcliffe. This volume 
contains artfully crafted poems about her experiences 
and preoccupations as an undergraduate. 

Rich traveled to Europe on a Guggenheim Fellowship 
for a year, and in 1953 at the age of twenty-four, she 
married Alfred H. Conrad, an economist at Harvard 
University. As a young wife, she continued to write 
poetry but found little support for her creative efforts. 
She felt that most young wives in the academic commu- 
nity were valued for their domestic abilities and that 
creative interests were encouraged only in so much as 
they occurred after the important work (domestic) was 
done. She felt that her poetry was perceived as a hobby 
and that limited time was available for her to read and 
write. As a result, she often wrote her poetry in the 
middle of the night or after all of the housework had 
been done. However in 1955, "The Diamond Cutters 
and Other Poems," which received the Ridgely Torrence 
Memorial Award of the Poetry Society of America, was 
published. Of Adrienne Rich and this volume Randall 
Jarrell wrote: 

"Adrienne Cecil Rich is an enchanting poet: 
everybody seems to admit it; and this seems 
only right. Everybody thinks young things 
young, Sleeping Beauty beautiful — and the poet 
whom we see behind the clarity and gravity of 
Miss Rich's poems cannot help seeming to us a 
sort of princess in a fairy tale." 



Mixed with the strong praise were some murmurs of 
disappointment, questioning whether she was becoming 
a poet who was too dependent on models. Adrienne 
Rich's own later reaction to this volume supports this 
doubt. "By the time that book came out, I was already 
dissatisfied with those poems, which seemed to me mere 
exercises for poems I hadn't written." 

These two earlier volumes of poems were written from 
the "perspective of a woman who tries to conform to the 
demands of a traditional society and whose power is 
measured by her ability to attract and please men" 
(Martin 176). She did not publish another volume of 
poetry for eight years; however, she continued to win 
awards and honorary appointments. 

By 1959, she had had three sons. In "When We Dead 
Awaken: Writing as Re-Vision," an essay published in 
1971, she examines her life as a married woman and 
mother and records the frustration she felt in trying to 
combine her domestic with her artistic life. This frustra- 
tion gave her a valuable insight into the lives of a wide 
variety of women, which she used in her later poetry. 

In 1963, "Snapshots of a Daughter-in-Law" was pub- 
lished and awarded the Hokin Prize of Poetry magazine. 
However, she was still trying to find time to read and 
was frustrated at her inability to find time for her own 
poetry. This sense of frustration, guilt, and suppressed 



AdrienneRichs 
Poetry 

^ r-r-rirn AND EDITED BY 

Sb^charleswokthgelpi 

AND ALBERT GELPI 



anger is a major theme of "Snapshots." It is in this 
collection that she began to date her poetry. It is, 
according to Albert Gelpi, the "transitional book in 
Adrienne Rich's development." It is a "penetration into 
experience which makes for a distinguishing style." She 
moves from objectivity to a more personal tone of voice 
and experience. 

This volume shows Rich's breakthrough as a poet. This 
breakthrough is connected to her growing consciousness 
of herself as an artist and as a woman (DLB 188). She 
makes references to Mary Wollstonecraft and Simone de 
Beauvoir, two autonomous women who stood for 
feminist issues and who did not relinquish their stan- 
dards or ideals in a patriarchal society. Her affinity with 
these women indicates that she had already begun 
working within a feminist framework. Rich has said 
that until this volume she "had tried very much not to 
identify myself as a female poet." In this volume, 
however, she emphasizes the isolation of women within 
marriage and protests against the tradition of economic 
and social dependency of women upon men. It was an 
outrage to her when she realized that the social expecta- 
tions for her after becoming married were to give up her 
poetry career and concentrate on being a wife and a 
mother. 

Her next published volume of poetry was "Necessities 
of Life: Poems, 1962-63," which was nominated for the 
National Book Award, and in it, Rich pursues her 
exploration of the "relationship between personal 
identify and the cultural content" (Martin, p. 184). Many 
of the poems in this volume have to do with war and 
other actions which she perceived as being masculine 
oriented: French civil strife, the Vietnam War, and the 
Arab-Israeli conflicts in the 60s. 

She was Phi Beta Kappa poet at Harvard University in 
1966, and later that year she and her husband moved to 
New York City, where he taught economics at the City 
College of New York. Over the next ten years, Rich 
taught at a number of colleges, including Swarthmore 
College and Columbia University Graduate School, 
Brandeis University, and City College. During these 
years of teaching, she became active in the protest 
movement against the Vietnam War. "Leaflets: Poems, 
1965-68," reflected her growing conviction of the connec- 
tion between private and public life. It also increased 
her visibility as a poet. The reviews however were 
mixed: some felt that she was in a decline as a poet; 
others praised her new vision. The cover of the book is a 
collage of windblown and torn newspaper columns 
showing the major causes of the time: Vietnam War, 
student unrest, and Black Power. Her sense of convic- 
tion and urgency is so strong that at times statement and 
moral judgment overpower her poetry (DLB 190). 

"The Will to Change," published in 1971, is a continu- 
ation of her combination of personal and political 



commitment. For this book she received the Shelley 
Memorial Award of the Poetry Society of America. She 
shows increasing rage at the waste of energies, espe- 
cially those of women in a patriarchal society. One of 
her most recurring themes in her poetry has been the 
relationship between poetry and patriarchy (Jong 171). 
Although she does not hate men, she feels that men have 
too long dominated women, and that the energies of 
women are best activated without the influences of men. 
During this time she also decided to change her personal 
life, and she left her husband. Later that year he com- 
mitted suicide. 

"Diving into the Wreck," published in 1973, is the 
volume of poetry for which she is best known. She and 
Allen Ginsberg were co-winners of the National Book 
Award in 1973. She for "Diving into the Wreck" and 
Ginsberg for "The Fall of America." She rejected the 
award as an individual award, but she accepted the 
award in the name of all women. 

Rich begins the book with a restatement of the necessity 
for new language, new vision, and new action. She 
explores the disparity between personal experience as a 
successful woman and the priorities of society at large. 

In "Diving into the Wreck," the title poem, she explores 
the wreck of a ship, a metaphor for the remnants of 
Western culture, the poef s past, and her subconscious 
life (Martin 189). According to Alicia Ostriker, this is 
Adrienne Rich's "major quest poem." It is about the 
problems of woman in a patriarchal society (Jong 171). 
In this poem woman descends into the water without a 
guide and with no rules, and then at the deepest point 
she becomes the androgyne (Ostriker 1 10). At the 
depths of personal and communal history, she is both 
"naked mermaid" and "armored merman" (Ostriker 
194). At the close of the poem the woman learns that the 
she and the he are we. It is the discovery of her sub- 
merged self that she is a "we" (Ostriker 237). It is Rich's 
quest to find the center and the energy of her being as a 
woman. 

Since "Diving into the Wreck," Rich has devoted her 
energy to dealing with the history and suffering of 
women. She has published "Poems: Selected and 
New," 1975, in which she explores the lives of women 
from the Massachusetts Bay Colony and other Puritan 
settlements, African women brought to the south as 
slaves, women of the mining camps, and the frontier 
settlements of the West. In "Old House in America," 
one of the poems in this volume, the house provides a 
metaphor for the lives of the women who lived in it. 
The visitor to the old house thinks of the mostly inarticu- 
late women who lived there and how their creative 
energies were denied. 

Other books include" Of Woman Born," published in 
1976, which deals with the history and practice of 

25 



delivering babies, from the care and warmth of the 
midwife to the impersonal style of the male obstetrician. 
"The Dream of a Common Language," 1978, has poems 
in which she has a vision of being one with life and faith 
that the vision can be fulfilled with men learning the art 
of survival from women. She replaces the "she" of her 
earlier poems and the "I" of her later poems with the 
communal "we." For Rich, the sense of communion has 
come through lesbian feminism, but she doesn't impose 
her personal choice upon others (DLB 194). 

"On Lies, Secrets and Silence: Selected Prose," 1966-78, 
published in 1979 is a collection of essays written about 
women writers such as Charlotte Bronte, Emily Dickin- 
son, and Anne Bradstreet. Rich brings a strong new 
feminine perspective as a literary critic to these writers. 

"A Wild Patience Has Taken Me This Far: Poems," 
1978-81, celebrates the accomplishments of women, 
famous and ordinary. There are portraits of Willa 
Cather and Ethel Rosenberg, along with portraits of 
Rich's grandmothers. In these portraits she creates 
positive and public images of women and presents a 
strong center of unity for all women. 

In 1983, she published "Sources," a twenty-three part 
poem that is at once autobiographical and an exploration 
of our culture. In this poem she acknowledges the 
importance of New England culture and geography on 
her life. She had moved to Massachusetts in 1979 with 
her friend, the writer and historian Michelle Cliff. Also 
for the first time in her poetry, she explores the influence 
of her Jewish heritage. Since 1984 she has been living in 
California. In 1986 she published "Your Native Land, 
Your Life," in which she has been trying to "speak from, 
and of, and to, my country." 

In her essay on Emily Dickinson, in "On Lies, Secrets 
and Silence," Rich defines her concept of the dual, but 
inseparable, role of the true poet: 

"Poetic language — the poem on paper — is a 
concertization of the poetry of the world at 
large, the self, and the forces within the self; and 
those forces are rescued from formlessness, 
lucidified, and integrated in the act of writing 
poems. But there is a more ancient concept of 
the poet, which is that she is endowed to speak 
for those who did not have the gift of language, 
or to see for those who for whatever reasons — 
are less conscious of what they are living 
through. It is as though the risks of the poet's 
existence can be put to some use beyond her 
survival." 



strong, calm vision indicates that she is approaching her 
own ideal of a poet who speaks as a seer in a "common 
language" (DLB 195). 



BIBLIOGRAPHY 



Adrienne Rich's Poetry. Ed. Albert Gelpi and Barbara Charlesworth 
Gelpi. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 
1975. 

Altieri, Charles. Self and Sensibility in Contemporary American 
Poetry. "Self-Reflection as Action: The Recent Work of 
Adrienne Rich." New York, NY: Cambridge University 
Press, 1984. 165-190. 

Auden, W.H. "Foreword to 'A Change of World'." Adrienne Rich's 
Poetry. Ed. Albert Gelpi and Barbara Charlesworth Gelpi. 
New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1975. 125- 
127. 

Dictionary of Literary Biography. 

Gelpi, Albert. "Adrienne Rich: The Poetics of Change." Adrienne 
Rich's Poetry. Ed. Albert Gelpi and Barbara Charlesworth 
Gelpi. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 
1975. 130-148. 

Jarrell, Randall. "Review of "The Diamond Cutters' and Other 

Poems." Adrienne Rich's Poetry. Ed. Albert Gelpi and 
Barbara Charlesworth Gelpi. New York, NY: W.W. Norton 
& Company, Inc., 1975. 127-129. 

Jong, Erica. "Visionary Anger." Adrienne Rich's Poetry. Ed. Albert 
Gelpi and Barbara Charlesworth Gelpi. New York, NY: 
W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1975. 130-148. 

Martin, Wendy. An American Triptych. Chapel Hill, NC: The 
University of North Carolina Press, 1984. 

Ostriker, Alicia Suskin. Stealing the Language: The Emergence of 
Women's Poetry in America. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 
1986. 

Rich, Adrienne. A Wild Patience Has Taken Me This Far, Poems 1978- 
1981. New York, NY: W.W. North & Company, Inc., 1956. 

Rich, Adrienne. Poems, Selected and New, 1950-1974. New York, 
NY: W.W. North & Company, Inc., 1974. 

Rich, Adrienne. Snapshots of a Daughter-in-Law. New York, NY: 
W.W. North & Company, Inc., 1956. 

Rich, Adrienne. The Dream of a Common Language, Poems 1974- 

1977. New York, NY: W.W. North & Company, Inc., 1978. 

Rich, Adrienne. The Fact of a Doorframe, Poems Selected and New 
1950-1984. New York, NY: W.W. North & Company, Inc., 
1984. 

Rich, Adrienne. Your Native Land, Your Life. New York, NY: W.W. 
North & Company, Inc., 1984. 



Rich continues to strive toward this ideal, and she has 
succeeded in integrating the gift of language and her 
sense of mission. Her confidence in her newer tone of 



26 





FICTION 





THE SECRET SPELL 



Delores DuBois 



French folklore tells of the magic which comes to a 
woman but once in her lifetime. No one knows why. 
But the magic remains. 

Sara was known for her good cheer and bright spirits. 
All who knew her were touched by her joy in life and 
the harmony she created in her home. Early in the 
morning, while others still slept, she was about her 
chores, baking and cleaning, all the while humming 
under her breath. 

"Ah, the Happy One!" the townfolk exclaimed when 
Sara walked by. The bright smile, merry manner, and 
half-tune of soft hums on Sara's lips charmed all who 
met her. 

For years it was so. But on the morning of her thirtieth 
birthday, the Happy One was seized with a strange, 
alarming restlessness. When she awoke, there was no 
song to hum. She lay in bed, unable to move, over- 
whelmed by this odd, nameless yearning. 

Her husband thought she had become ill. "Sara, shall I 
fetch the doctor?" he anxiously inquired, seeing her still 
under their down quilt. Turning her brown eyes toward 
him, Sara softly replied, "No, it's nothing. Only a 
dream." 

And with that, she climbed out of bed. But there was a 
heaviness about her movements which had once been so 
light and so merry. 

In Sara's young breast had arisen wild, untamed stir- 
rings of passion, dreams of excitement, and hopes of 
freedom. She could feel this nameless yearning as alive 
and powerful as the beating of an eagle's wings impris- 
oned against the cold steel bars of a cage. 

"Is there to be no more to my life than this?" Sara 
thought in bitter, angry disappointment, glancing with 
hopelessness about the very cottage which had once 
brought her such joy. 

The bleak, bitter taste of vanishing girlhood weakened 
Sara's high spirits. She was unable to sleep at night, 
wrestling with a silent, unseen pain. Disturbed by his 
wife's restlessness, her husband reached for her hand. 
But even this did not help her. 



"He's a fine, good man," Sara reproached herself. 
"Kind, loyal, hardworking, handsome. What is it I 
seek?" 

Sleepless nights and tear-filled days took their toll upon 
Sara, who was once called "The Happy One." When she 
could sleep she was tormented by dreams of such 
sensual and vivid allure that she awoke, drenched with 
moisture, trembling with fear and desire. 

Odd stirrings and formless feelings possessed her. And 
there was no escape from this restlessness. Days and 
weeks went by and still the Happy One's song did not 
return. She moved as one in a daze or in great grief. 

When Sara's husband looked upon the woman, he saw 
the Shadow of Age touch her. Her soft, smooth skin was 
etched with crow's feet about the very eyes that had 
once sparkled with such joy. Subtle creases of fatigue 
lay beside her lips. 

Sara's husband brought her wild flowers from the field 
one day. 

"Shall I wind them in your hair, beloved, as I once did 
when we were first married?" he asked. 

Such an offer had once made Sara turn to him with a 
smile, but now brought only a silent shrug of her slender 
shoulders. 

In bewilderment, her husband then sent their children to 
his mother's house, but still Sara's song did not return. 
A cold chill of terror and despair seized the man. In 
desperation he went to the house of the Old Woman 
who lived on the edge of the town. 

"I beg you, Old Woman," the man entreated, "come and 
help my wife. She is the one known as The Happy 
One.'" 

As she hobbled to the cottage beside the man, the Old 
Woman inquired, "Is she with child?" He shook his 
head. The Old Woman continued, "Is she ill?" 

In bewilderment the worried husband turned to the Old 
Woman, whispering "I think she is possessed. She no 
longer is the girl I married. She wakes at night burning 
as though in a fever, and all day she sits looking out the 
window." He raised his hands in silent misery and 
helplessness. 

"Ahh, I see now," the Old Woman nodded knowingly. 
"Yes, I see," she softly repeated. "So it has come to her, 
too." 



27 



When they stopped before the cottage, the Old Woman 
kindly said, "Go now. Leave us in peace. All will be 
well." 

When they entered the cottage the Old Woman found 
Sara by the window, just as her husband had said. She 
sat completely still, staring out into the distance. Then 
she turned to face the Old Woman with pain-filled eyes. 

"Nana," she softly asked, "what is to become of me?" 
She burst into tears, crying, "I find no peace anywhere." 

Nodding, the Old Woman listened, her blue eyes alive 
with recognition. As Sara spoke, a far-away look came 
into the Old One's eyes. 

"It was that way with me once, too," the Old Woman 
softly reminisced. "Caught in the magic of the Secret 
Spell... when it overtook me, I fled - forsaking a good 
man and my own beloved children," Nana said, speak- 
ing more to herself than to the listening Sara. 




"Had I only waited... had I only known what I know 
now," the Old Woman regretfully murmured, a spasm 
of pain touching her jaw. 

"What is this Spell of which you speak?" Sara cautiously 
asked. 

"What is it?" the Old Woman repeated with a low 
chuckle. "No one knows for sure. The ancient Greeks 
called it the 'Reawakening'; the Germans - so scientific - 

28 



labeled it a woman's Second Adolescence; the English 
whispered about it - naming it the 'Second Blush'; 
and the French, who know best the mysteries of love, 
simply called it The Secret Spell.'" 

In wonder Sara asked, "Why have I never heard of this, 
then?" 

Nodding her head in silent acknowledgment, the Old 
Woman answered, "We are not allowed to speak of it 
openly in daylight. This Spell eluded the most gifted 
scientific minds for centuries. No, it is best kept as a 
secret. The knowledge is passed on only in whispers 
from one woman to another - just as I share it now with 
you." 

"I'm frightened, Nana," Sara whispered, anxiously 
twisting her hands together. 

"Have no fear, little one," the Old Woman said, gently 
placing a wrinkled hand upon Sara's shoulder. "Don't 
struggle so much. You can't fight it anyway." 

"Why does it come upon me just now?" Sara asked, 
"What is the sense of this torment!?" 

The Old Woman shrugged her shoulders and matter-of- 
factly explained, "It's something you need to go 
through, my child. All women do - at some time be- 
tween the age of 30 and 40. It's the only way in which 
we can bravely face our own aging." 

Smoothing Sara's hair with her hand, the Old Woman 
said, "It is said to be Nature's gift to women - this gentle 
ripening of desire in our thirties, just before the inevi- 
table onset of age." 

"But a man, is he not the same?" Sara asked. 

The Old Woman shook her head from side to side. "No, 
for a man the time of blossoming is when he is 18. For 
us, the sweetest season of our lives is when we turn 30. 
It is the autumn of a woman's life, and Nature's last 
chance to bring forth fruit from her womb." 

In astonishment Sara listened without moving, as the 
Old Woman continued. 

"Years and years ago, the French - recognizing the 
power and beauty of the Spell - permitted a woman 
unusual privileges. At this one time in her life a woman 
was allowed, even encouraged by her own husband, to 
take a young, ardent lover. In many cases she gave 
herself to the son of a woman friend. And with the 
magic of her autumn years upon her, she would teach 
him the pleasures of love. It brought him to his full 
manhood safely and allowed her to escape from the 
perils of unchecked desire and restlessness. 



In horror Sara drew away from Nana, shaking her head 
in shock and disbelief, "Old Woman," she gasped, "you 
mean they preyed upon the innocence of a young man?" 

Impatiently the Old Woman waved her hands, answer- 
ing, "Ah, child - not preying. It was the custom then. It 
was believed that Nature had pre-arranged this union. 
The perfect embrace for a man and a woman, when the 
matching of desires was perfect and exquisite. In those 
days, a child conceived of such a union was twice 
blessed. Here was Nature's most bountiful harvest - the 
blending of a man's seed when most strong with a 
woman's womb when most ripe..." 

"Stop, Old Woman!" Sara choked, "what has any of this 
to do with me? You frighten me with your talk." 

Chuckling, the Old Woman wrapped her gnarled fingers 
over her cane. "That was in bygone days, child. It is no 
longer so easy. No longer so safe for a woman in the 
Spell. We pretend it no longer happens, and you see..." 
she lifted her eyebrows knowingly. "We ignore the 
mysteries of Nature itself, and suffer accordingly. Are 
you at peace? Is your husband?" 

"If this is the way of Nature, then why am I so filled 
with fear?" Sara asked. 

"Never has the instrument been so finely tuned," the 
Old Woman mysteriously responded. Then she slowly 
rose and soundlessly hobbled to the cottage door. 

"Nana!" Sara exclaimed in sudden panic, "but what am I 
to do?" 

With a twinkle in her eyes, the Old Woman turned to 
face Sara. Lifting her eyebrows, the old wrinkled face 
beaming with mirth, Nana chuckled, "When a woman 
gets to THAT age, they say she must have an affair or 
buy herself a pair of red shoes." With that she rose and 
hobbled to the cottage door. 

And so it came to be, just as the Old Woman had pre- 
dicted. When fear departed, Sara felt warm rushes of 
desire flood her body, oiling her every movement, and 
perfuming her skin with a muted, haunted scent. A 
strange and subtle stirring of rekindled sexuality blos- 
somed. What had been a trickle of consciousness in the 
girl's adolescence burst into a flood of rich, vibrant 
overpowering desire in her thirties. 

These waves of sensual desire carried her onto the 
shores of a hidden, secretive sexual peak. Never had 
men looked so good. Younger men. Older men. All 
men. 



A subtle fluid grace embodied her movements, so that 
men unconsciously trailed her with their eyes when she 
walked by. Even as they looked, they could not say 
why. There was a promise in the smallest turn of her 
wrist. Her gestures seemed to seduce and withdraw at 
the same moment. Their eyes hungrily sought her, 
hoping that this contact alone would give them a touch 
of her fire. 

This restless yearning could not be denied or ignored. 
Sara ached to experience life anew and taste of its 
pleasures before the cold winter of old age chilled her 
spirit. Temptation flooded her slender frame. This was 
not simply the desire to embrace a man, but the stronger, 
richer desire for excitement, freedom and romance. 

In her autumn season, Sara, no longer trapped by fear of 
her own power turned to her husband, offering him her 
body, oiled now with desire, and primed with magic. 
As the Old Woman had said, never had the instrument 
been so finely tuned. 

In her husband's arms, Sara's body too became an 
instrument. His tongue and fingers, enchanted by her 
magic spell, became as deft and skilled as a musician's. 
His manhood became the bow that brought forth 
melodies from her body. At night, her breasts arched 
upwards in reverent surrender, her body singing a 
sudden refrain of light, piercing notes, echoing with 
lower, deeper melodies from her throat. 

The songs which Sara made were all melodies which the 
world never heard. She created songs which reached the 
night air, touched the stars, and shattered the silence. 
Songs which reverberated in the private strength of a 
man's arms. The songs kept Sara young in spirit, 
although in time her body began to betray her. 

In moments of lonely doubt, facing the knowledge of 
time rushing by, she would look at her own aging face in 
a mirror. But she was afraid no longer. Despite the 
wrinkles and lines upon her skin which experience had 
sketched, Sara could still hear a refrain of those songs. 
The notes, so sweet and pure, came back to her again, 
and she knew that she would never grow old. In her 
mind's eye, Sara danced in bright red shoes into a 
timeless, ageless future, to the music her body had made 
in the Secret Spell. 



Delores DuBois is a freelance writer who lives in Nampa, Idaho. 



"She makes us young..." the Old Men sighed. They 
desired to possess the quicksilver that charmed her 
every movement and gesture. 



29 





PROFILE 





MARIA SIBYLLA MERIAN, 17TH 
CENTURY JUNGLE SCIENTIST 

Margarita Mondrus Engle 



The boat glided quietly through dense South American 
rain forest. When it docked, a properly dressed German 
woman gathered up her notebooks, paints and paper, 
and trekked into the forest in search of tarantulas. When 
she found one, the spider was so large that it was 
capable of dragging a hummingbird from its nest. 

Maria Sibylla Merian's watercolor of a bird-eating 
tarantula eventually gave the spider its scientific name, 
Avirculariidae, but in 1699, scientific names had not yet 
been devised, and few scholars were interested in the 
explorations of the first female naturalist. 

Raised in Hamburg, the daughter of an artist, Merian 
began her entomological career at 13, when she reared, 
painted, and described the behavior of caged silkworms. 

At 18, she married Johann Graff, one of her father's art 
students and moved to Nuremberg. After the birth of 
her first daughter, Merian contributed to the family 
income by teaching young girls to paint flowers and by 
selling her embroideries and floral designs. 

Merian's first book of engravings, the New Book of 
Flowers, was published in 1680. Acclaimed as an artist, 
Merian was praised by Joachim von Sandrart in 1675 for 
her "great skill, delicacy, and intelligence in drawings, 
water colours, engravings." The art historian went on to 
note that she was "managing her household with great 
efficiency." 

Merian soon returned to her childhood fascination, 
metamorphosis, the process by which caterpillars 
become butterflies. Her next book, The Wondrous 
Transformation of Caterpillars and Their Remarkable Diet of 
Flowers, contained detailed illustrations and descriptions 
of insect behavior. Merian had made her own wondrous 
transformation, from artist to scientist. 

At 38, after the birth of a second daughter, Merian left 
Johann, and soon moved into a castle in Holland, where 
she joined a religious colony of Dutch Labadists. 



At Castle Waltha, Merian conducted a simple experi- 
ment which helped disprove Aristotle's concept of 
"spontaneous generation," still accepted by most 
European scientists, who believed that maggots were 
created from rotting meat, and frogs from mud. 

Merian dissected a female frog, removed the eggs, and 
observed their transformation first into tadpoles, and 
later frogs. 

When missionaries returning from South America 
showed Merian the insects they had collected as curiosi- 
ties, her life was again transformed. 

Merian moved to Amsterdam, and worked for eight 
years, until she had saved enough money for a journey 
to the Dutch colony of Surinam, just north of Brazil's 
immense Amazon rain forest. 

In 1699, at the age of 52, Maria Sibylla Merian did what 
no woman of her time would dream of: Merian packed 
up her paints and, along with her younger daughter, 
sailed to the great South American wilderness. 

At a time when most Europeans were still searching for 
the legendary El Dorado, a fabled king so rich he wore 
nothing but gold dust, the Dutch were busy establishing 
sugar and cocoa plantations, and clean, orderly towns. 

At first Merian was content to explore the countryside 
near the capital city, Paramaribo, painting, tasting, and 
describing exotic tropical crops. She urged the farmers 
to grow the vanilla orchid as a flavoring for Europe's 
latest sensation, chocolate. She expressed horror at the 
treatment of Indian and African slaves, and wrote about 
seeds the women ate to avoid having "children who 
would become slaves." 

Merian alienated the farmers in other ways as well. No 
Dutch planter could understand why anyone, especially 
a woman, would want to spend hours watching and 
admiring the leaf-cutter ants which devastated crops, or 
painting the wasps that nested in roofs, the blue lizards 
that lived under floors, the termites that devoured 
wooden posts, and the frogs that were washed up into 
gardens during the rainy season. 

"Yes, they jeer at me," Merian wrote, "because I am 
looking for other things than sugar in the country." 

Nevertheless, Merian's paintings of tropical crops were 
the first ever published by any European. Her journeys 
into the interior resulted in the discovery of nearly 100 
insect species new to science. She was the first to 
illustrate the close relationships between tropical insects 
and the plants they ate. 



30 








■ 







31 



After braving the dangers of jungles teeming with 
poisonous snakes and scorpions, jaguars, piranha, and 
vampire bats, Merian finally succumbed to illness. The 
same rivers where she had paused to paint caymans 
devouring coral snakes, defeated her with mosquito- 
borne fevers. 



As the naturalist Lansdown Guilding, writing in 1831, 
said of Merian, "We can never sufficiently admire the 
zeal of this female votary of the sciences." 

Margarita Mondrus Engle is a biologist living in Fallbrook, 
California. 



After two years in Surinam, Merian had to leave, taking 
with her a wealth of paintings, notes and specimens. "I 
almost had to pay for it with my life," she wrote of her 
South American adventure. 



This article first appeared in Pacific Horticulture . 



Settled once again in Amsterdam, Merian directed her 
energy toward the publication of Metamorphosis Insec- 
torum Surinamensium (1705), "so that the gentlemen 
scholars can see what wonderful works and animals 
God has created in America." With no support from 
museums or foundations, she had to sell her collection of 
preserved insects, alligators, and snakes to pay for the 
engravings of her paintings. 

Although the book never paid for her trip to South 
America, it brought Merian acclaim both as a scientist 
and artist. Despite her fame, Merian died in poverty in 
1717. After her death, Czar Peter the Great collected as 
many of her paintings as he could find. Today, Merian's 
original works reside primarily in Leningrad, the British 
Museum, and the Royal Library at Windsor Castle. 

Merian was a self-made scientist. She collected South 
American wildlife more than a century before the great 
naturalists, von Humboldt and Darwin. Merian always 
thought of herself as an entomologist rather than an 
artist. Most of her paintings are of insects, accompanied 
by detailed notes on their feeding habits and behavior. 
Merian never varied her illustrative style, and never 
attempted to paint portraits or landscapes. 

Working primarily in entomology, an area where 
women are still a minority, Maria Sibylla Merian, 
without any financial support, accomplished the un- 
heard of. She explored unmapped jungles and discov- 
ered exotic creatures. Throughout, she never lost the 
spirit of wonder which led her to devote her life to the 
study of insects whose "beauty cannot possibly be 
rendered with the paint-brush." 

Known primarily as a pioneer scientist in her own time, 
Merian is today acknowledged only as an obscure artist 
of little importance. As Goethe noted in 1830, Merian 
has "moved to and fro between art and science." 

The 1982 publication of a limited facsimile edition of her 
paintings (Maria Sibylla Merian in Surinam, by Rucker 
and Stearn, Pion Ltd., London) may signal a much- 
deserved revival of interest in the work of this unique 
and courageous woman. 







32 




PERSONAL EXPERIENCE 



MY LOVE AFFAIR WITH A MORNING CLOAK BUTTERFLY 

Marguerite Knickerbocker 



After a long illness I was able to get out each day and recline on a chaise lounge to get some 
sunshine. There was an avocado tree at the bottom of the yard and one morning I noticed a 
beautiful butterfly, always lighting on a white post in the yard. He came out to fly only 
when the temperatures were right for him. I moved my chair close to the white pole and 
lay my hand on it. Sure enough, the next time my friend lighted on my right hand. He 
played this game for several days as I praised him for his loving touch. A few days later, he 
lighted on my index finger and I slowly drew him up to my mouth and talked to him. He 
enjoyed my warm breath. After one week, in which I gained his confidence, he would hang 
on to my lower lip. When I would get up to walk a little, he would cling to my upper chest, 
just below my neck. After a few weeks of getting to know one another, I would find him 
waiting for me; all I had to do was to hold out my hand and he would quickly greet me by 
clinging to my lower lip. If we had rain he rarely came out, so every morning when I awoke 
I looked for a sunny day so we could share our love affair. 

My heart began to sadden as I watched his beautiful wings begin to molt. Praising him and 
thanking him for his loving ways, we shared his last weeks. Our farewell was sudden: one 
day he lit on my right eyelid and gave me an electrical shock. It felt like putting one's finger 
in an empty light socket. At first, I thought he had blinded me, but in a few seconds I was 
in good shape. 

Years later, reading a book about butterflies, I found to my amazement that Einstein had 
had a similar experience on Mount Hood. Friends had taken him to watch the 
Morningcloaks as they played in the downdraft of Mount Hood. In the time he was there 
he also befriended a butterfly and Einstein said the last visit with his butterfly brought him 
a sudden shock in his eyelid. He explained that the Morningcloak had given him all the 
energy he had left in his dying body. 

Truly that sharp kiss on my eyelid was one of God's living blessings in my life. 



Marguerite Knickerbocker is a freelance writer who lives in Searchlight, Nevada 






BOOK REVIEW 






Riane Eisler, The Chalice and the 
Blade, New York: Harper and Row, 

1987. 

Michael Purdy 



There is no surprise in Riane Eisler's labeling of patriar- 
chal civilization as regressive. The dominator model of 
society represented by patriarchy has prevailed for more 
than two millennia and has brought with it the rule of 
the blade . The development of the technology of the 
blade, representative of violence, enforced domination, 
and invidious hierarchy, has culminated in the ultimate 
weapon of nuclear destruction in the present. Eisler 
concludes that the time for change leading to a different 
future is ours now. We can choose a continuation of the 
dominator model of society, or the equalitarian option of 
a partnership model of society. 



Eisler's investigation of Western civilization (she covers 
the period from the Paleolithic to the present), demon- 
strates a historical alternative in the social model of the 
chalice during the Golden Age of the Great Mother. 
The chalice represents the partnership model of society 
prevalent from late Paleolithic to historical times ending 
with the highly evolved civilization of Crete. Whereas 
the dominator model of society stresses all the deficien- 
cies of patriarchy, the partnership model of society 
stresses compassion, caring, and nonviolence. 

For Eisler the problem is not one of men as a sex, but of a 
social system in which the blade is idealized and a 
technology of destruction is emphasized. In our era both 
men and women, Eisler says, have been taught to equate 
true masculinity with violence and domination. Eisler's 
grand synthesis of history differs from most in that she 
considers both halves of humanity, both female and 
male. Most historical studies, until recently, have 
considered only the male as actor. (We need only read 
the current newspapers to find reference to new books 



34 



emphasizing that women have also been primary actors 
as scientists, inventors, artists, writers, etc.) Her research 
is indebted to the growing legion of feminist scholars. 
Reading this book we can feel the vast pyramid of work, 
in many fields, by many researchers, which supports 
what Eisler writes. I can only give a brief glimpse in this 
short review of the grand scale of Eisler's thought, and 
of the rich and extensive feminist literature she draws 
from in reaching her conclusions. 

The main theme of Eisler's book is the future implication 
of the organization of relationship between male and 
female for the totality of the social system. Her basic 
premise is that the partnership model of social organiza- 
tion (both historically and in current cultures such as 
that of the !Kung and BaMbuti) tends to be more peace- 
ful, less hierarchical and authoritarian than the domina- 
tor model. Her methodological approach is that of 
action research; she believes with knowledge we can 
intervene on a cultural level to change the way both 
women and men are socialized. Such a change will 
bring about, once again, a caring, compassionate, 
equalitarian, and creative society. 

Such a change would be a return to the partnership 
model of relationship and society, but it would not be a 
return to a matrilineal society, we are not likely to 
recapitulate that consciousness (Eisler indicates that 
Neolithic society was not a matriarchy). The end of the 
Paleolithic centered on the omnipotence of Mother 
Nature, as the giver of all life, the fertile source of 
nurturing and abundance. Magical consciousness, 
implying a vital identification with nature, was pre- 
dominant, according to Feuerstein in Structures of 
Consciousness 1 . Mythic consciousness, indicative of the 
emergence of the psyche and symbolic separation from 
nature, was in its inception. In Neolithic times mythic 
consciousness intensified relaxing the vital identification 
with the natural world. The Goddess became Goddesses 
as the self became more individuated and less in har- 
mony with nature. Women and men settled in villages 
and later cities, developed trading, stockbreeding, and 
the many rich arts and technologies of the late Neolithic 
period. Eisler traces this peaceful and artistic culture 
through the Minoan civilization of Crete, and indicates 
the rich and powerful influence of the Goddess in Greek 
and later cultures. All the theories of man the hunter- 
warrior are swept aside by Eisler in favor of documented 
evidence of dynamic partnership societies lasting into 
the first millennia in some places. 

Eisler traces the shift from partnership society of the 
Neolithic era to the hope in modern times of a new 
consciousness. In the process she bursts the bubble of 
most of the predominant scholarship and myths to date 
that support the dominator view of society and sup- 
press, consciously or otherwise, the fact that there has 
been another, very important movement in cultural, 
economic, religious, and political history that has not 



been told, that of the female half of humanity. The story 
takes us into Greek literature and myth, the ascendance 
of the dominator society, the shift from unity to duality 
of thought, Jesus as a feminist and the Church hierarchy, 
the feminine as a force in history, challenges to the 
dominator society, and the last chapter, "Breakthrough 
in Evolution: Toward a Partnership Future." 

One of the most interesting processes in the changing 
concept of self and world is how the Goddess conscious- 
ness was transformed into God consciousness. (This 
apparently is the topic of Eisler's next book, Breaking 
Free, with David Loye.) Part of the answer lies with the 
Indo-European invaders who were patriarchical and 
lived by the blade . The first wave of invasion began in 
4300 B.C. and the invasions continued through the 
beginning of the first millennia. This dominator society 
eventually took over all of the European-Mediterranean 
world, bringing with it war, slavery, authoritarian rule, 
and domination of the female half of humanity. Feuer- 
stein indicates that urban living and the individuation of 
the one Goddess into Goddesses from about 10,000 B.C. 
already indicated the foreshadowing of the mental 
consciousness and the self-conscious ego of the male, 
dominator society. Perhaps, without the barbarian 
invasions, consciousness would have "evolved" differ- 
ently, and we would be living with a more constructive 
and less deficient consciousness today. 

Regardless, as Jean Gebser has described, in The Ever- 
Present Orig in 2 , we are now moving from the mental- 
rational consciousness of the dominator society into an 
integral consciousness of sisterhood and brotherhood. 
Perhaps that transition will only be realized if we heed 
authors such as Eisler who point the way to a more 
holistic and harmonious humanity. 



1 Georg Feuerstein, Structures of Consciousness: The Genius of lean 
Gebser, An Introduction and Critique, Lower Lake, CA: Integral 
Publishing, 1987. 

2 Jean Gebser, The Ever-Present Origin, translated by Noel Barstad 



Michael Purdy, Ph.D., is professor of Communication Studies at 
Governors State University; he teaches Listening and Interpersonal 
Comm unication 



35 





BOOK REVIEW 






THE AQUARIAN CONSPIRACY: 
PERSONAL AND SOCIAL TRANS- 
FORMATION IN OUR TIME, Second 
Edition by Marilyn Ferguson, with new afterword and a 
new foreword by John Naisbitt (author of MegaTrends) 
J. P. Tarcher. 1987. 

Bethe Hagens 

I'm convinced that society will be changed only 

by events, not institutions. Meaningful change 

can only be implemented at the level of the 

person, 

the neighborhood, the small group." 

Noel Mclnnis 

The Aquarian Conspiracy, p. 208 

Getting acquainted with a new edition of Marilyn 
Ferguson's The Aquarian Conspiracy, the original not 
having been off my shelf since 1980, has been difficult 
for me. I try to stay away from mirrors. 

The gist of Ferguson's vision is that the world is in the 
midst of radical socio-cultural evolution — evident in 



"The New Age watershed classic" American Bookseller 
HHi WITH A NEW AFTERWORD AND UPDATED RESOURCE LIST ■■ 

The AQUARlAN 
CONSPIRACY 

Personal and Social 
Transformation in Our Time 




MARILYN FERGUSON 

Foreword by John Naisbitt 



everything from day care to acceptable scientific the- 
ory — away from competition and towards cooperation. 
The book has been said to be years ahead of its time, yet 
is filled with pioneering examples of this "paradigm 
shift." Spurred by a politics of spirit, body, mind, and 
society — the Aquarian vision of the possible demands 
not a piecemeal approach to situations but a new value 
structure from which to conceive reality (see the chart 
below). "Not by revolution or protest but by auton- 
omy," she says. "Power to the people. One by one by 
one." Mother Teresa received a Nobel Peace Prize for 
this strategy. 

But I feel time creeping up, a sense of some things best 
let go. An overwhelming certainty that the political 
power of the Conspiracy will be claimed — but not by my 
generation. 

When the book first appeared in 1980, the ideas of 
wholism (now "holiness") and appropriate technology 
seemed obvious to me. I wonder now if 70s idealist 
activism was a prolonged age-grade ritual, specific to a 
huge now-middle-aged bubble in the national popula- 
tion profile. What was it that "we" were trying to 
"breathe together" (conspire) into being? A sense of 
self? Hope for our planet? 



36 



328 The Aquarian Conspiracy 



ASSUMPTIONS OF THE OLD 
PARADIGM OF ECONOMICS 

Promotes consumption at 
all costs, via planned 
obsolescence, advertising 
pressure, creation of 
artificial "needs." 



People to fit jobs. Rigidity. 
Conformity. 

Imposed goals, top-down 
decision-making. 
Heirarchy, bureaucracy. 



Fragmentation, 
compartmentalization in 
work and roles. Emphasis 
on specialized tasks. 
Sharply defined |ob 
descriptions. 

Identification with job, 
organization, profession 

Qockwork model of 
economy, based on 
Newtonian physics. 

Aggression, competition. 
"Business is business." 



Work and play separate 
Work as means to an end 

Manipulation and 
dominance of nature 



ASSUMPTIONS OF THE NEW 
PARADIGM OF VALUES 

Appropriate 
consumption. 
Conserving, keeping, 
recycling, quality, 
craftsmanship, 
innovation, invention to 
serve authentic needs. 

Jobs to fit people. 
Flexibility. Creativity 
Form and flow. 

Autonomy encouraged. 
Self-actualization. 
Worker participation, 
democratization Shared 
goals, consensus. 
Cross-fertilization by 
specialists seeing wider 
relevance of their field of 
expertise Choice and 
change in ]ob roles 
encouraged. 

Identity transcends job 
description. 

Recognition of 
uncertainty in 
economics. 

Cooperation Human 
values transcend 
"winning." 

Blurring of work and play 
Work rewarding in itself. 

Cooperation with nature, 
taoistic, organic view of 
work and wealth. 




Despite global traumas of unprecedented genocide, 
terrorism, famine, deforestation, climate shift, and 
environmental toxicity — all now more evident than 
when the first edition was published — many of the 
transformative seeds from the '70s have rooted. I think 
there is no question that the approach of the millenium, 
the advent of semiconductor and superconductor 
technologies, and the explosion of electronic media have 
combined to push change towards Ferguson's Aquarian 
ideals. 

Optimism, she says, is the only necessary condition. 
"Pessimists," says Naisbitt in his new Foreword, "are of 
no help at all. The optimism of The Aquarian Conspir- 
acy is an affirmation of life's possibilities." Much has 
flowered. But we conspirators hold our breath. Will the 
next generation of seeds germinate? Are we giving over 
to ritual (a word derived from root — "to prepare the soil 
for planting") and magic to ensure fertility, and if so, is 
this ancient true wisdom or last-gasp superstition? 

In 1970, we had Earth Day. Nineteen hundred and 
seventy-eight brought Sun Day. By the summer of 1987, 
we had begun to speculate upon the practical advan- 
tages of joining with galactic energies and entities 
showering the planet with love, potency, intention, and 



urgency. Harmonic Convergence became a permanent 
bond for many Conspirators. But it was also a media 
joke. It is hard to gauge the political effect of this 
cultural polarization. It is equally difficult to evaluate 
the new spiritualism that has enraptured so many 
Conspirators — especially since spirituality is ideally a 
private (non-commercial) affair. 

As an example, in 1980, my friend Noel Mclnnis (quoted 
above) was managing editor of Marilyn Ferguson's 
Brain/Mind Bulletin (a bi-weekly that has established 
itself as a reliable source of information on bio-spiritual 
potential). He has since left and, with his wife the Rev. 
Rita Mclnnis, has founded the National Science of Mind 
Center in Washington, D.C. They are closely affiliated 
with Barbara Marx Hubbard. While Noel does not feel 
particularly comfortable with labels like "channeling," 
there is clearly a shared dynamic in the information he 
now trusts and acts from. 

Noel recently sent me a beautiful, inspired essay "which 
came in response to my desire for a generic millenial 
prophecy" (as he put it). He had discarded Nostrada- 
mus, Ramtha, et al. This particular text embodied 
Aquarian ideals. Further, his personal shift from SDS 
activism to trust in spirit entities seemed to me symbolic 

37 



of larger change in the dynamics of the Conspiracy itself. 

More and more people — Aquarians as well as "neo- 
phytes" hoping for a global "quick-fix" — are jumping on 
what used to be called the Hundredth Monkey band- 
wagon. A scathing review in the Fall 1986 issues of 
Whole Earth News notwithstanding, I believe there is 
something to the phenomenon. That Rupert Sheldrake, 
in exposing the inherent "vitalist" assumptions in 
contemporary theories of DNA programming, is doing 
valuable work. That full-moon meditations, "World 
Instants of Cooperation," and Harmonic Convergence 
may have a planetary effect just as autonomous sit-ins at 
military and nuclear installations worldwide appear to 
have had an effect. 

But I know that there is a negative side. Enough people 
seem to want an answer from "the other side" (death?), 
that physicists and mystics alike are professing an 
immanence and transcendance in nature that can leave 
any Aquarian breathless. A clear politics has yet to 
materialize, however. I don't think Greens are the 
answer. (It would require another article to explain 
why.) 



successful in launching radical change. It is based in 
prolonged, systemic neoteny. 

Oddly, I believe that it is just these values that have led 
much of the Aquarian Conspiracy into passivity and 
dependence upon event-based scenarios. It might be a 
pole shift, a meter, a huge chemical spill, a nuclear 
disaster, plague, the real collapse of our money sys- 
tem . . . Any such event could actually be argued to be 
the Aquarian dream, the catalyst for real conspiracy. For 
if initiation, in the form of THE EVENT, finally comes — 
response is clear and unequivocal. The New Age goal is 
response-ability. Preparedness. All that Scouting come 
home to roost. 

Without THE EVENT, I'm more and more convinced 
our role will be in the grandstand. If we cheer our 
young people, they will certainly surprise us. 



Dr. Hagens, professor of anthropology at GSU, says that she has loved 
The Creative Woman since its inception, which she has proved by 
writing articles, guest editing Summer 1980 and serving on the 
Advisory Council. 



I believe that the expanded emphasis on the "spiritual" 
in the Aquarian conspiracy has been transformed from a 
personal mysticism in the '70s to magical shamanism in 
the late '80s. We rarely hear terms like "biofeedback," 
"consciousness," "alternative learning," "regional 
networking," "demonstration project," or "hands-on" 
any more. This is the language of the Conspiracy as 
originally conceptualized. 

We have now moved even more deeply into an electro- 
chemical planetary mind-set — sensitive to the trampling 
of Third World lives and ideas. Only mythical images 
will do. By pulling shamanic metaphors from the 
depths of our image-making capacity, many Aquarian 
Conspirators claim to be repairing and reanimating their 
disjointed light bodies — via acupuncture, out-of-body 
experience, past-life regression, inner-earth channel- 
ing ... as well as better diet, more exercise, and a return 
to monogamy. And as holiness manifests itself in 
individual life, so many Conspirators are coming 
increasingly to claim their cooperative role as the 
functioning brain/ nervous system of a living planet 
earth. This image can be ultimately shattering for the 
flesh-and-blood Conspirator, however, because his or 
her "great big brain" knows so much and is still at a loss 
about the next step. 

Nearly ten years later, I believe there is still no "tooth 
and claw" side to the Aquarian Conspiracy. As in the 
new models of physical evolution, Aquarian cooperation 
and co-creation by definition displace Darwinian 
competition and struggle as operating values. This is a 
vastly different perspective from ideologies usually 



38 





ANNOUNCEMENTS 





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40 



LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 



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41 





ART 







I was born in the Netherlands in 1939. When I was 8 years old, my family 
moved to the Dutch West Indies. I tend to focus on the human form and like 
so many artists, am inspired by the American Indian people and their cul- 
ture. 

Machteld Tims 



42 



LOUISE NEVELSON 



A GREAT ARTIST WHO LIVED A LONG AND 

PRODUCTIVE LIFE 



1900 - 1988 




43 





ANNOUNCEMENTS 





RESURRECTION: 

SITE INSTALLATIONS 1977-1988 

BY BETYE SAAR 

Helen Hughes 



"Resurrection" marks a decade of site installations by 
Betye Saar, California artist who has been an original 
sponsor and advisor of The Creative Woman for eleven 
years, has provided two cover art pieces, and has served 
as guest editor for a special issue, Imag es, Women in Art 
(1978). 

These installations, recreated for the exhibition at 
California State University at Fullerton in February of 
this year, are environments into which the viewer can 
gaze or even walk or add "offerings." They were 
originally installed at the Studio Museum in Harlem, the 
Baum/Silverman Gallery, Los Angeles, Mount St. 
Mary's College and The Museum of Contemporary Art, 
Los Angeles, the Visual Arts Center at MIT, Cambridge, 
the Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Canberra Art 
School, Australia, and Artemesia Gallery, Chicago. 
Bringing all ten of these pieces together in a gallery 
especially designed to display them evokes a powerful, 
mystical, spiritual power and presence. It is a heart- 
touching journey through Betye's life and consciousness. 
Betye Saar has observed that there are four elements 
common to her work: emotional engagement, some 
trace of nature, her personal presence, and energy. 
Extensive critical literature on her work has been gather- 
ing for the past two decades, as she has moved from 
printmaking, through assemblages and collages (inti- 
mate windows and small boxes filled with evocative 
objects thrust into metaphorical or shocking juxtaposi- 
tion) through ritual altars and shrines to these "rooms" 
which contain all the elements of her earlier work with 
an expanded impact and intensity. 
A sampling of critical reviews: "What makes the art of 
Miss Saar so compelling is not only her genuine feeling 
for the living spirit of her recycled materials, but also an 
inventive and highly sophisticated sense of form. . . (she) 
makes brilliant connections between primitive ritual and 
our urban consciousness" (Grace Glueck, New York 
Times ). "During the 1960s and 1970s when blacks were 
involved in not only a thrust for economic, social and 
political equality but also for a recasting of their self- 
image, Saar's legendary work, The Liberation of Aunt 
Temima (1972) burst onto the American art scene like a 
Molotov cocktail," (Lowery S. Sims, from the catalog). 
Betye has always seemed to know exactly what she 
wants to say and how she wants to say it. She has come 
from the indignation and protest of the turbulent years 
to insistence on the validity of the experience of ordinary 
people and the objects which somehow contain and 
represent their spirit. She sees connections that others 

44 



miss; invited to MIT to do an installation on "high tech" 
materials, she asked herself, "What would primitive 
people think of these microchips if they fell from the 
sky? They would think they were new forms of magic." 
Thus, she creates a magical altar of the materials with 
which computers are built. There is humor here without 
mockery, in her Mojotech . She is serious, she wants to 
build a bridge between the physical and the metaphysi- 
cal so that we can as a planet survive. Of this piece, 
Betye said, "My focus is on technology as an element of 
magic and on art as ritual." 

Where will the artist's vision take her in the future? She 
is contemplating outdoor installations, combining her 
affinity with nature, and incorporating sound in some 
special natural site. We have new revelations to look 
forward to. 

The catalog may be ordered from California State 
College at Fullerton, California 92634. 





1986/PREDICTIONS/First Shown: The Women's Building, Los 
Angeles, Ca. 





£ D J T O R *S COLUMN 






One of the most stimulating and well managed confer- 
ences of recent memory took place April 7 - 9 in Indian- 
apolis, sponsored by Indiana University and Purdue 
University at Indianapolis. Marge Piercy set the tone by 
her keynote address, beginning with a recitation of the 
crippling myths by which our lives have been circum- 
scribed, and moving from a concern for women, based 
on her own experiences, to a feminist critique of the 
entire culture. With cumulative power, her vision led us 
through a cleansing rage to a revolutionary conscious- 
ness. Pierces novel. Women at the Edge of Time, 
provides the paradigmatic projection for the hope for a 
Utopian future, as Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's 
Tale provides the dystopian vision. Piercy concluded 
that "We must learn that selfishness, finally, is lethal to 
all of us" and ended with her great poem, "The Eternal 
Migration." The poem begins with the question, "How 
do we know where we are going?" and ends with these 
lines: 

In my spine a tidal clock tilts and drips 
and the moon pulls blood from my womb. 
Driven as a migrating falcon, I can be blown 
off course yet if I turn back it feels 
wrong. Navigating by chart and chance 
and passion I will know the shape 
of the mountains of freedom, I will know. 



A variety of interesting insights marked this conference; 
let a few quotations suggest the flavor: "Feminism itself 
is a religious movement." (Kristine A. Culp on feminist 
theology) 

"We're all on public housing! Anyone with a mortgage, 
getting their interest payments deducted from their 
income tax has a government housing subsidy." (Byllye 
Avery, National Black Women's Health Network) 
"Reproductive technology leads most often to dystopia, 
a future in which women are not in control of their 
bodies, in which women and children are not honored" 
(Gena Corea, author of Hidden Malpractice ). An Or- 
wellian language distances us from the facts, as when 
the judge referred to Mary Beth Whitehead as an "alter- 
native reproductive vehicle," and when a new technique 
is given the acronym GIFT for "gamete inter-fallopian 
transfer." 

Papers from the Philippines and China brought an 
awareness that the women's movement is truly an 
international phenomenon, not merely the hobby of a 
few privileged Western white middle class women, as 
some have charged. India has a long-standing, well- 
established women's movement, and 'The feminists of 
India are leading the world in conceptualizations of 
feminism." (Berenice Carroll, professor of political 
science, UI Urbana) How many readers know this? that 
- "When the ERA was lost in the United States, the 
French feminists demonstrated outside the American 
embassy in Paris and demanded the return of the Statue 
of Liberty." (Kathleen Barry, Brandeis University) 
For this participant, a most stimulating paper was 
Maggie Berg (Oxford and Queens University) on Luce 
Irigaray and "The Female Psyche in a Nuclear Age." 
Berg discussed deconstruction - "Although we order the 
world in terms of opposites, binary categories, these 
categories are false and they ultimately deconstruct 
themselves, become their opposites,". . . "To disarm the 
bomb, we must disarm our categories,". . . "To attempt 
to establish identity by a separation of Self from Other 
(when Self=male and Other=female or nature) leads to 
the conclusion that "selfness is finally fatal to us all." 
(This echoed and confirmed Piercy 7 s argument.) "We 
need a new kind of discourse to transcend linguistic 
limits. . . we must strive to go to a place that we can 
never see.". . . "All violence is related; the mind that 
creates rape creates war. The arms race is a phallocen- 
tric fantasy." Berg went on to relate Irigaray to Derrida, 
Lacan, the Heisenberg principle and quantum physics. 
Maggie Berg has agreed to send us an article for future 
publication. It will be an important statement, for which 
I hope the reader's appetite has been whetted. 



45 



". . .And When the Bough Breaks" 
The Conference featured Marcia Cebulska's play, ". . 
.And When the Bough Breaks. . ." portraying the per- 
sonal and social devastation threatened by "surrogate" 
mothering arrangements. "Rocking the cradle too 
violently endangers not only the baby but risks breaking 
the mother into pieces, as well," wrote Anne Donchin for 
the IUPUI Office of Women's Research and Resources. 
"It is usually socially and economically disadvantaged 
women who are pressed into service to perform child- 
bearing services for the affluent infertile," she writes, 
"and the intent of the practice is to perpetuate the male 
genetic line. Though in most instances the 'surrogate' is 
not only the birth mother but the genetic mother as well, 
the very term 'surrogate mother' nullifies the signifi- 
cance of her genetic and gestational contribution. . . and 
she seldom receives more money than the attorney 
representing the interests of the biological father!. . . 
Much as feminists have discovered that no woman is un- 
affected by society's tolerance of prostitution so we may 
discover too late that 'surrogate motherhood' diminishes 
us all." 




Sarah (Marika Blades) asks her sister, Tess (Deb 
Sargeanl) to consider being a surrogate mother for 
her in Marcia Cebulska's.. And When the Bough 
Breaks. Photo: Michael A. Heitz. 



FUTURE ISSUES: 

Stay tuned for Women of Israel: lewish and Palestin- 
ian/Arab (Fall 1988), Women in Management (Winter 
1989), Women in Photography (Spring-Summer 1989), 
and a new opportunity, just arisen, for a special issue on 
Soviet Women Today . We'll be checking out per- 
estroika (restructuring) and glasnost (openness) and 
finding out what they mean for women in the Soviet 
Union. 



4 b 



If you notice a slightly different look to The Creative 
Woman this time you are correct. We have joined 
the ranks of the desktop publishers and chose this 
issue of The Creative Woman to be the break- 
through for us. Our normal method of production is 
to dump from our NBI wordprocessor to a Compug- 
raphic Editwriter 7700 (nearing antiquity). This time 
however we dumped from the NBI to a Macintosh 
SE which in the long run turned out to be no big 
deal but for several days caused migraines and 
complete stressouts for myself particularly and for 
anyone else who happened to be meandering 
through graphicsland. I noticed there was a distinct 
change of traffic flow for a few days. What didn't 
help matters any was that our erstwhile Mac opera- 
tor had been completely worn out by the production 
of the university catalog on the NBI /Mac and we 
had sent her home with strep throat and a bad case 
of the overload-blues. So here I was all by my lone- 
some with pages and pages of TCW copy to dump 
and massage and no one to help me except the pro- 
duction manager, who knew more than I did but 
apparently not enough to get me through the bad 
times. On Monday evening I went home with a split- 
ting headache and no more knowledge than I 
seemed to have started with. I was quite generally 
confused. On Tuesday things seemed to fare no 
better. We could not get the translation procedure to 
work correctly and hours and hours were wasted as 
I had images of Helen coming home from Russia to 
find me draped over the Mac with saliva running 
out of my mouth. And no completion of The Crea- 
tive Woman... but as things tend to do, they swung 
around eventually and we found out what the little 
mistakes were that we were making and the copy 
began to flow and flow and flow. By Thursday I was 
in love with my Mac and wouldn't let anybody work 
on it but me. ( I sometimes think that computers 
bring out all the worst qualities in us little human- 
oids.) So ask me today what I think about the Mac 
and I will honestly tell you that I don't know how 
we ever lived without it and now every one of the 
designers wants one. 

As we develop and grow with our system you will 
probably see more changes down the road on The 
Creative Woman. This issue was formatted with 
Pagemaker 2.0 software using the very most basic 
tools. I have a long way to go to learn all the bells 
and whistles. You can count on it that as I learn, the 
results of the labor will be shared with you. I kid 
you not when I say that I look forward to sitting 
down at the Mac each morning and what's really 
frightening is that I have found myself thinking 
about it at night. 
I wonder if computers get lonely? 




READERS AND FRIENDS OF THE CREATIVE WOMAN 

As we enter our 12th year of publication, we begin a new phase of growth 
and development. 

The Creative Woman offers women like you a chance to be heard and to 
share your concerns with other women. There is a door open here that will 
not be found in the large, slick, commercial women's publications. 

We ask your help in extending our reach and increasing our circulation. 

What others have said about The Creative Woman... 



"The Creative Woman applauds and celebrates 
women as creative, productive, involved, and 
inquiring individuals. It is intended to be a vehicle for 
original works, as well as a forum for the exchange of 
feminist ideas and information. It is aimed at a 
general readership and is recommended for consid- 
eration by all libraries with strong women's studies 
collections." 

Richard Centing, Choice, publication of the American 
Library Association 

"The level of professionalism (of the publication) 

seems remarkably high. The point is the spirit of gritty 

resourcefulness that keeps these vital, valiant, 

necessary publications going... one of the best little 

magazines." 

Bruce Allen, The Christian Science Monitor Monthly 

Book Review 



"The Creative Woman is a jewel - one of the most lit- 
erate, sensitive, thought provoking and beautifully 
presented publications we've found anywhere. We 
sense with each issue that in some very real way our 
lives would be diminished without it!" 
William Adelman, Subscriber to The Creative 
Woman 

"...your journal has evolved a unique style that is at 
once serious, and gentle, and evocative..." 
Glenda Baily-Mershon, Illinois NOW 

Your subscription, gift subscription or 
donation as a Friend of The Creative 
Woman is needed to help the publication 
grow. 






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